At the age of thirteen I was surrounded by Islam and Muslims. They were some of the most amazing people I have ever met.
Just the kindness and the compassion that I saw they have for people, their generosity and how welcoming they were.
My family raised me, my sister, and my brother to be more aware of the world and everyone and everything that’s in it. We spent most of our life traveling. We always learnt quite a bit. It was not just an education, I mean a trip for having a lot of fun, but it was about education and learning about where we were and the culture and the history.
We moved over to Riyadh in Saudi Arabia about 1980. My father is a surgical oncologist. He was hired by King Faysal Specialist Hospital, so we lived there for about three and half years or so.
We had four mosques around and so we heard the call to prayer all the time. And I think my love for Islam actually stemmed from hearing the beautiful sounds of the words of the Quran. Ever since then I just felt the connection to it whether I understood the language at the time or not I found it fill my heart and it never left me since the age of thirteen.
Taking Shahadah in Dubai
It was 28 years later that I have done Shahadah, and that was because I did move back to the Middle East. And about a year ago when I moved here to Dubai, I decided it was something I wanted to resume and look into.
I got a Quran and I started reading and just wondering everyday, maybe from half an hour to an hour, I would just spend time reading through different sections. It wasn’t that I started reading from the beginning and went to the end, I would just open numerous pages and spend time reading it and processing the information.
I got to a point where they just felt so real for me, the things about having faith and about doing prayers and about giving to others and believing in the words of Allah. Everything made sense.
It was in May that I chose to make Shahadah. It was a time in my life that after having studied for a while and I decided it was something important for me, a path in my life that I was ready for. I could feel and sense that it would bring a greater level of fulfillment and joy in my life. I felt a bit of a void and I knew this was the piece that was missing. I made Shahadah with full intention of having Islam as everyday part of my life.
A great example of something that the Prophet would share is to have compassion for individuals and to share your love and your knowledge with others and to be open and caring and giving and to have faith and share it with others. It is very important and it’s something I want to be able to share with others.
As a scientist I work with technology that is appropriate to work with horses. I met Saqr and his brother Mubarak and Ayman and I got to treat their horses and it was a great experience and I went on a horse race with him and it was absolute excitement. I love horses and enjoy the time and opportunity of having met them and they are kind and generous people.
Their kindness and generosity is very reassuring and it was unexpected to be so welcomed and I’m very grateful for all your deep kindness and your generosity, very much so. They were definitely a part of my introduction to having even the desire to look further into Islam.
To see their way of living was very inspirational and made me really contemplate moving further along into doing deeper reading.
I know at this point I still have enormous amount to learn. But that’s OK. You know, it’s just a process that is taking time and understanding and have the support and guidance that surrounded Muslims I guess most of their lives. I met some other converts as well some of them had beautiful stories so it was very encouraging and so it brought me to where I’m here today.
I have to say this is probably one of the most joyful experiences in my life. In addition to having my precious children, this has been one of the most meaningful experiences and decisions that I have been through in my life.
I’m filled with joy and peace, and knowing the benefits of Islam and it’s all so amazing to be directly connected with our divine Creator and know how much love Allah gives to each and every one of us.
It is just precious…
It’s precious beyond words.
Listen to the Quran here.