At the age of 15, many teenagers are interested in boys, going out and other such activities.
I am not going to lie, I was one of them all right, however now and again I would always think there must be more than this to my life, more to my purpose on this earth.
At the time I was in my final year at school and I had befriended girls of an Asian background. I never asked them their religious beliefs, it never occurred to me they were even Muslim.
Until one day, one of my friends decided it was her time to wear the hijab (headscarf). I was completely shocked, as I said it never even entered my mind she was a Muslim.
Of course, I was so interested in this, asking questions like why now and was she made to wear it. And not once did she give me a harsh tone of voice even if my question was a silly one.
It opened my eyes that out there, there were people who were following a path that did not include going out and spending all their money and spending hours to look good. So, I went to my computer and looked up Islam.
I did not straight away think yes, I am going to take my Shahadah; it took me a while.
When I decided it was time, I was actually out shopping in my hometown and went past a dawah stall; I went over and spoke to them.
The kind man invited me to go and see his wife, to have a chat with her about any concerns I might have.
So, I sent his wife a message and we set a day in which I could go and meet with her.
The day I was going to meet with them I was so nervous I did not know why. Maybe it was the fact I had never met them before and was worried how to speak to them, how to dress and things like that.
When I finally got there, she greeted me with a huge smile and light in the eyes that you could not believe. She took me in her living room and she made me a nice cup of tea.
After I had had my drink she asked me what I thought of Islam, I said in a shy tone: “I like it very much.”
She smiled. Then she said: “So you have no questions?” I shook my head.
Then, her husband that I met the day before entered. He said: “Are we ready?”
I thought to myself, ready for what?
Took Shahadah & Became Muslim
Then his wife turned to me and said: “Would you like to take your Shahadah?”
I paused for a minute then smiled and said “Yes, yes I would.”
So her husband went upstairs got some books and sat me down. He told me they would read some Quran first, then they would explain it to me. Then, I would say my Shahadah.
Wow, I was so nervous; trembling, sweating.
Then, after about 5 minutes, I calmed down and felt relaxed. And sure I was doing the right thing,
I took my Shahadah, went home and had a shower as instructed.
Now, as a new Muslim, I had so many new worries like what to tell my family and friends, learning how to pray and thinking about hijab.
I did not tell my family first. I told my closest friends who were Muslim, so that was OK. They were so happy for me, got me small presents and supported me so much.
I carried on for normal for a while as I was preparing for my GCSEs. That is my final exams in high school in the UK. During my study breaks I learned how to pray and read small simple books.
When I told my family they didn’t seem shocked, I think they thought it was a phase and I would grow out of it. They finally knew I was serious when I started wearing hijab.
Now that was very hard for me.
Not just the wearing of the scarf but all that goes with it like being shy with men, lowering my gaze, not wearing makeup and perfume and doing up my hair.
My iman went up and down a lot and the hijab did come off for a while, but I met someone who changed my life so much.
I left school with OK grades and I went to work in my local hospital; also I was doing college at the same time. Unfortunately, I found doing both was not easy and as I needed the money I left college.
During the time I was not wearing hijab I was walking through the main floor at work and I bumped into someone by mistake. I looked up and it was a man, he smiled, I said sorry and walked off.
Colleague at Hospital
I did not realize this person worked at the hospital, then everyday after that I saw him.
One day I stopped and spoke to him, he was so shy it was unbelievable. After that, I discovered that he was a Muslim.
Everyday after that I would stop and say my salams, then one day he said to me do you want to go out?
I was nervous, did not know what to say at first. So I said no but he told me there would be other people with us. I agreed.
The day we went to a local coffee shop, I did not know at the time, but he was looking to see if I would be a good wife for him. We spoke about Islam and hijab, it was very pleasant, then I went home.
Later that evening I got a phone call, it was him asking if I wanted marriage. I said: “Yes”; and the rest is history.
A Stronger Faith
He helped me a lot become who I am today with hijab. Nearly right after we got married I put it on, my confidence was great and my iman was strong. Allah granted me a fantastic person.
My family liked my husband and because of his lovely soft relaxed voice they also became less hostile towards Islam.
Islam has changed my life. I am so happy now, I feel I am using my life for a good purpose.
I am not as greedy and selfish as I was before and it changed my relationship with people for the better.
Though I still have some other hills to climb, I am now a happy mother of a daughter and I know I have to learn as much as I can to help her become a great Muslimah. Inshallah, Allah will be kind to us.
I know my story is not exciting, but I hope it will give others, maybe in a situation that might be the same, some confidence.
And I must also add a special thanks to my husband, as he has gone through thick and thin with me, when my iman was very low and when I was on top of the world.
May Allah reward him and I hope inshallah that we will be in Jannah, together with our children. Ameen.