Naghem S., a Plaza staff member, writes:
“Why do you wear that thing on your head?”
I get asked this question almost every day, and a million reasons pop into my head. It’s my religion, it’s an act of worship, the hijab gets me closer to God, it’s my identity, and so forth. Yet the resonating voice, that soul-stopping and heart-pounding answer, is that my hijab is my freedom.
I started wearing the hijab when I was eight. My parents didn’t force me into wearing it, and I didn’t wear it because all of my little Muslim friends were wearing it. Quite the opposite; I was the first girl among my friends to wear the hijab. Usually a Muslim girl starts wearing the hijab when she turns nine, the start of puberty. I remember that day like it was yesterday. I woke up and got ready for school. The night...