I have finally came out of a long blogger’s block and I cannot wait to share all the content I have planned to bombard you with. My only problem is finding the time to sit down properly sipping on ginger tea (because that’s how I like to write on my blog, by the way for a relaxing tea recipe, click here) and actually write a post.
This post will be a quick update on my travel to Cape Verde in 2017. It’s not going to be however, a traveling post, although I will share some photos, instead I will share with you my experience of going to Cape Verde for the first time with a hijab (scarf) on.
One of my biggest fears when I converted and especially when I decided to put on the hijab was the reaction of my family. Although, to some aspect my family embraced me with open arms, I still went through rough times trying to proof to my family that this was a valid decision and not just a phase. To some extent I was lucky because most of my family lived abroad, so I was able to be free to choose what I wanted to wear without any ridicule. However, I was not able to hide in my cave forever and I had to pack my bags and face my family abroad. In 2010, roughly 1 year of my conversion, I had to go and visit my family in Cape Verde and Portugal. I remember having anxiety on the days leading to the trip and not being able to sleep with doubts of whether or not I should take the hijab off. I knew that if I would go with the hijab, I would have to be an ambassador of Islam which I was still very much a newbie and lacked the confidence to back up my decision for my conversion. I didn’t want to take on a very important role when I was not fit for it at the time, so I decided to take it off. Having said that, I still kept my clothe very modest, wearing a scarf around me to cover my chest and never wore a “traditional” bathing suit to the beach.
One thing I noticed through my decision to take my hijab off, was that I was becoming less confident and unintentionally confirming to the people around me that my conversion was indeed just a phase. From there on something had to change in me, I knew that Islam is the faith that I wanted to practice, I believe in the aspect of being modest and having to wear the hijab but now I had to show it to others. I know that I will not be a scholar in the religion but at least I had to try my best to represent it through actions if I am not able to do it through words just yet.
The stepping stone towards confidence in my hijab happened when I had my children. I am no longer just responsible for myself and I have to try to be the best role model that I can for my children. That was the setting factor for me, I no longer cared for what other people thought of me, even if those people are my family but my main purpose is trying to set an example for my kids. Even if I fail in everything in life at least I want my kids to acquire courage, confidence, compassion and love from God that they witness from their mother growing up. I want them to know that despite having a mother whose family are not Muslim, that I never let that have an affect towards my decision. That whatever my kids set their minds towards that they can achieve it through resistance, resilience, passion and love. If you want to know what I think about my hijab, I wrote a post, click here.