Becoming me

Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.

The transition between childhood and adulthood is not denoted by a fine line, but sometimes there is a definitive moment that rearranges everything that has gone before and shapes everything that comes after. For me, that moment was the first day of my freshman year in high school, on September 6th, 2011, when I started wearing the hijab.

A few months earlier, I was asked a hilarious but thought-provoking question. One of my friends inquired, “Hey Simal, since you’re Muslim, why don’t you wear the kabob on your head?” Of course, I couldn’t help but burst out laughing: the hijab of course, not the kabob. I really didn’t have a definite answer, but I knew that there was no concrete reason why I didn’t wear it. This little conversation, which lasted less than a minute, is what sparked my interest in the hijab. Of course, there were many other factors, but this one really hit me because no one had ever made me take such a hard second look at myself. It was then that I began to research the hijab and its place in Islam. What I found reached beyond my expectations. I discovered the true, spiritual beauty of hijab in such a short period of time that the garment became easy to fall in love with. I developed a greater understanding of...

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