Dehijabization and the consequences…


I have tried to write something after my last post but there wasn’t really anything to write about.  For about a month it was becoming increasingly unbearable to not have any job. On February 26th I cleared out the last penny from my bank account to pay the rent. When I came back to my apt I just sat on my bed and wanted to cry and break down. The days ahead of me seemed a nightmare. I just wanted to break down. I wanted to give up. Wanted to pick up the phone and call my dad, tell him that I failed. I wanted to tell him that I need to come back home. I wanted to accept the teasing remark of my boyfriend makes often time to cheer me up “you are not a guy, stop trying to be a guy. Go home, be a good girl, study in the university near your home.”  I sat there for twenty to forty minutes then got up and took a shower. Cooked some rice and boiled a potato for dinner. In the middle of cooking I also cleaned my apartment. While trying to be busy with different tasks, I have told myself “don’t..Not yet…you’ve paid your rent, you have enough food to go on for another week or so. Don’t give up until everything is over. It’s not yet time to give up.” After saying that to myself for about an hour or so, I felt like I have got back my strength, the stubbornness to not give up yet. Once I was done with all the cooking and cleaning, I have put myself back on the laptop and started applying for job and modifying my resume. Trying to figure out why there’s no call for any interview.  It was around 5pm I was looking though Craigslist for any immediate opening when I got a call. It was a staffing agency, not the ones I have already contacted with. The guy asked if I could come to his office by 6.30 to fill out some paper works. That time I didn’t have a car but luckily his office was few blocks away from my apt. so I took the bus. It took time but I went there. I lied to him, Told him my friend took my car to campus. I did so with the hope of not being rejected again, knowing that I got rejected before because I don’t have proper transportation. I felt horrible but I was not ready to slip this opportunity away. It didn’t matter how much he would offer me for the job, I just needed a job. I just needed something that would keep me going. He offered me the job and asked if I can start from Tuesday. I said yes. Only to realize later on that it will take me 5 hours to commute to the job location though a public transportation. At that time that was the only type of transportation I had available. It was a full time job, decent pay. On Tuesday morning I woke up at 4.30 and got on to my first bus by 5am. From then on it took me 2.5hours to go to work and 2.5 hours to come back from work every day. So for the first two weeks I have spent 5 hours a day on transportation to keep the job. However; by the end of second week I was already exhausted. I missed my class for 2 weeks and I was falling really behind. The only reason I am doing all these so that I can get back to school again. Now if I am going to fail again then there is no need for all these struggles. So at last I had to ask dad to give me one of his car. There was a reason why I didn’t want dad’s help in this particular situation. It’s because even before I got the job I was thinking about one decision that I have been keeping aside for years after years. It’s the headscarf on my head. I stopped believing in god since my 11th grade. However, I didn’t have the courage to take of the hijab (headscarf).All these years I was scared of the consequences. No; my parents are not angry parents who would kick me out of the house or lock me down. It’s the thought of how I would hurt my mom who had gone through so much all her life just to give me a better life scared me most. However; as days and years were passing and as I was growing up this headscarf started to symbolize more than just a piece of clothe on my head. Every time a stranger would ask me why I wear it and when I had to defend the idea of hijab, something that I don’t believe in anymore; it became a symbol of lie, double life, and hypocrisy. This was a horrible feeling. Nobody seems to understand this. Everyone asks me why have u suddenly decided to take it off. I don’t know if it’s only me who feels that way. That it’s wrong to represent or advertise people something you don’t believe in. So on my first day of work I didn’t wear my hijab. I felt naked and uncomfortable. There was this strong urge to pick up the scarf and put it back on. But I managed not to do so. I couldn’t’ tell my parents about this situation for about two weeks. When finally I did tell them they were upset. My mom cried out loud as if someone passed away. It broke my heart. What was even worse the fact that dad called me and put the phone on speaker to hear mom crying. I don’t know if this gave him some sort of peace but I didn’t hang up. I listened to her. I listened to her loud scream and felt nothing. I was cold as ice. Numb as if someone had put anesthetic in me.  Now my dad probably accepted this whole thing or maybe it’s an act. He calls me everyday talks to me like old days. I talk to him too just like before. It’s as if nth happened. I just don’t go home anymore. I am scared to face what’s waiting at home. May be I will feel more of that cold feeling in my heart when I go home.  So, I avoid the conversation of coming home. However I have accepted his generous offer of using his car until I manage to buy my own. I have become a little comfortable with life again. I started going to class again. I don’t know if unconsciously that’s what I wanted all along, to rid myself off everything so that I have nothing but to go forward. Whatever it is I eager to see what’s next. As for good news, I am starting at CVS pharmacy as pharmacy Tech from Monday. You might wonder how it’s good news. It is good news indeed. Finally the money I paid to get the pharmacy tech license won’t be wasted.

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