My Hijab

Relationship: Child of im/migrant
Hijabs and Faith
Hijabs and Faith

The hijab has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I was born & raised in NYC to 1st generation Muslim immigrants. My mother wore the hijab. It was normal & I saw nothing different about it.If anything, I felt proud & empowered by it.I grew up knowing that the women around me brought their faith & beliefs with them to a foreign place.They stood strong despite what others may have thought of them. Their hijabs were not only a sign of their faith, but also a sign of their strength & their beliefs.Wearing it myself, allowing it to be part of my identity, empowered me. However, I found myself in a society, that considered what empowered me to be the thing that limited me. For a while, I hid myself behind my hijab because I thought that it was all people would see. I allowed the ideas and views of others to dictate how I viewed the hijab & how I viewed myself.I fought it as best I could but the outside world has lots of influence, especially when you are young & trying to "find yourself".It was in my late 20s when I discovered that you never really find yourself completely. It is an ongoing journey & it can be beautiful if you embrace all the parts of you. My hijab is part of me. It serves as a reminder of my faith, of where and who, I come from. It does not define me. It is not all I am. It does not dictate all my thoughts, beliefs, perceptions, ideas, & emotions. It works beside them.It grounds me, reminds me not only of the journeys of the women who came before me but of the personal one I am on today & everyday.

Place(s): New York

– Hanin

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant