Yes, I admit it. I used to be ignorant. I didn't care about my aurat. I didn't wear tudung. And not to wear tudung is common from where I come from. But, it doesn't indicate that the society is ignorant and it's up to the women on what they choose to wear.
So how does it get started? Most of my classmates while I was in maktab and university mates wear tudung, and some even wear tudung labuh. Yes, I could feel that how some people didn't treat me well when they see a muslimah being a free hair, and yerp, I was stubborn. But I have this friend, who I think reflect the real personality of being a good muslimah. Yes, she's soft, well-mannered, but at the same time she shows us that you can't fool her.
So at last, I decided to 'berhijrah'. I wear tudung bawal. Selempang kiri kanan, letak brooch. And sometimes I opened my tudung while I was going out. Then, the tudung sarung was in trend. So wore that, but I realise that's not my style. And some of the tudung is not a perfect hijab. Till one day, I saw a black pashmina and bought it. The pashmina is long and big. It's big enough to be tudung labuh. And I asked myself. "Why not? Why not now? Why can't I wear perfect Hijab?" So I decided to wear tudung before I came back to Kota Kinabalu.
My family startled when they saw me at the first time. My sister-in-law asked me "Ella pakai tudung sudah?"
my cousin asked me "Sejak bila kau pakai tudung ni?", my bestfriend asked me "Kau betul-betul kah sudah pakai tudung ni?", friends asked me "uina..lain sudah kau?" "Ko ndak panas kah pakai begitu?" but my mum said "Baguslah pakai tudung, aurat kita terjaga".
I try to change bit by bit. And I could feel how the society changed towards me, even from the non Muslim. Apart of being in multi-cultural and multi- religious family, I think all of my family and friends respect who I am. Sometimes they even ask "Ella, kau mau pergi sembahyang kan?". And there were several times, when I do my shopping with trolleys, in the small and crowded path within shelves, men will give me space and way to go first while they were standing aside. How beautiful it is when people see you differently, in a good way of course. And even some of my non Muslim friend would tell me whether certain things is suitable for a Muslimah or not. For example, when we talked about facial products or spa. And yes, I didn't deny it that there would be "Godaan-godaan" here and there. For example,it happens when I saw a blouse which is not suitable for a person who wear hijab, or how sometimes I saw women's beautiful hair.
My advice to the muslimah is, don't force yourself to do 360 degree changes.Try bits by bits. And sometimes, you are going to be frustated. You have to understand why Allah asked us to cover our aurat. And from your understanding, try to reflect on how the society thinking about aurat. Do your reading (I love Owh So Muslim and I luv Islam). Try to read on other's experience and the most important thing is to pray to Allah, so that He would open your heart to cover your aurat.
I am writing this not to show how proud am I on my changes. This post is dedicated to several friends, some of them had changed to a better muslimah, some is still searching for the 'Nur'. They keep asking me "How ella? How do u change?"...May Allah bless you <3