My name is Noora Alsamman. I became a muslimah when I was 15 years old. (Ten years ago) My mom who is Syrian (family from Haleb) born in Detroit and my dad is an american with parents from polish/slovak background. I was also born in Detroit, Michigan. My grandma is maronite and mom catholic and dad catholic. When I was fifteen I wanted to be a nun. I was in my World History Class in highschool and we were studying all the major religions. When we got to Islam I was very much interested and there was an egyptian brother in my class who was correcting the teacher when he made mistakes and I thought wow he (the egyptian brother) must have strong faith to be able correcting the teacher like that.
So one day I asked him what is the difference between catholicism and islam. He said not that much. Well I was not satisfied with his answer so I asked his mom if I could have a copy of the Qur’an in english. She gave me one and when I started to read it I couldn’t put it down. I just keep reading it and I knew it was from GOD. You just know there is NO way a man could write this. And me being a person who apprieciates poetry, so I loved it very much. I found it to be amazing. So
I became muslimah in my heart. And then all the hardships started.
I started praying and fasting, etc. My parents especially my mom started giving me a VERY hard time. Me being so young I imagined they would love Islam the same way I did, but for them it was completely different. They would take my hijab and sajadi (prayer rug) and my Qur’an and materials about Islam. My dad would search my room everyday. And I would hide my hijab in the closet. My mom started trying to forbid me from being friends with muslims and she would call my friend’s parents and tell them stop telling my daughter about islam, because “you are confusing her” she said.
My parents made me go to church and I would just sit there thinking these people are SO lost and this priest how he lies to the people and reads from the bible only what he wants them to hear. And then manipulates the meaning. And one day my mom set up a conference with me and one of the priests. I would say I love Islam and why would you think something so beautiful is so bad? And he would tell me this and that and say some quotes from the bible. He even told me (I had a dream I was going to a muslim country and to the desert wearing hijab) he said this was from satan. Asturghfullah. This manlooked like he had satan in him when he said this! I will never forget the look on his face. I asked Allah subhana wa t’ala to guide me.
My mom would cook pork for me on purpose and say it was beef, but I checked the wrapper and it said pork. And my dad, who’s parents are polish/slovak ancestors would tell me in this house you are either catholic or you leave. I even had to hide my Qur’an in the air conditioning vent so they wouldn’t get it because they would throw it in the garbage. And they took the lock off my door so praying was VERY hard. They would make fun of me praying. I learned the prayers in arabi my self with a small prayer book.
I can’t even explain to you how much it would hurt me that my parents were this way towards me and islam. So I started giving my sister 11 years younger than me dawah (explained to her about Islam). My parents told me if I don’t stop it, I had to leave. So I did but I told my sister many things and now she questions why catholics can’t just pray to God and why confession and many other things. Subhana Allah. So I said a prayer that when I was older I would practice islam totally. And I stopped praying for a while asturghfullah. I had no one to support me or give me guidance except my friend’s parents who said listen to your parents.
My muslim friends didn’t understand what I was going through and they weren’t mature enough or knowledgable enough to teach me and answer the many questions I had. One day(20yrs old) while I was in college/university I called up the lady who had given me the Qur’an because I heard there was a masjid just built nearby. Because before then the closest masjid was 45min-1hr. away. She said they were having a dinner. So I went and when I heard the adhan (call for prayer) I just was so happy and cried. So I learned that you should make the shahada publicly so I did during Ramadhan and I made a commitment to be steadfast and not care what my parents or anyone else said or did. I felt I could relate at this point to Yunus a.s. who was in the belly of the whale. I was/am determined. So I stopped bad habits and left bad company. And surrounded myself with muslims.
I started wearing hijab and my parents would say you are not going outside like that. But either I did anyway or wouldn’t go. And sometimes I would put on my hijab in my car so they wouldn’t see me because my mom would always say that islam ask to obey your parents, so you must listen to us. And she said you will not wear that thing on your head and you would wear shorts and be stylish. One time my mom didn’t want my sister’s friends to see me wearing hijab so her and my sister grabbed it off my head. And in defence I hit my mom. Asturghfullah. She told me I was selfish for wearing hijab and embaressing my sister and the whole family. She doesn’t like to be seen with me in public in the city she lives. And I really got a hard
time from my grandma (sito). I would be praying sometimes and she would yell at me and said Don’t you hear me when I am talking to you. And tell me I look like an old woman wearing abaya and hijab. And Subhana Allah she even said one time she couldn’t believe Isa a.s. was born miraculously. They would hear me praying the Qur’an and literally make fun and laugh and curse at the words Asturghfullah AlAdheem.
My grandpa stopped talking to me, my mom told me to go to hell and so did my grandma. My mom even tried to take me to a psyciatrist when I was younger who happened to be yahood (a jew). She explained to him I had become a muslimah and he tried to give me psychotic medicine. I threw it in the garbage. SHU HAD? HUWA MAJNOON.
Anyway, I found it VERY hard to study in school with all this craziness going on. I wanted to study Islam and become like a sheikha. So I started looking to get married. And Alhomdulilah I found a good muslim from Damascus Syria. SO I got married and moved from Atlanta to Houston and made neeyah for hijra as well. And like a year later I had a boy named Yousef which I battled for my family to not call him Joseph. Miskeen. Alhomdulilah ana mabsuta kateer and I hope INSHA ALLAH T’ALA to make hijra to Medinatoon Nabi. ALLAH KAREEM.
Recently Masha Allah I met a sister who is jordanian and she became muslimah. She went through a hard time like me. And I just hear amazing stories about people embracing islam like this jewish guy from NY who moved to jerusalem (Quds) and he became muslim and his moroccan jewish wife became muslimah and kids and he moved to the muslim parts and learned arabi. MASHA ALLAH WAL HOMDULILEH. I just thank Allah swt for giving me hidayah to Islam.
Did you ever question the fact that if Jesus (may the peace and blessings of Almighty God be upon him) was god why would he pray to himself? Ever wonder why the Qur’an is the ONLY book in the world to be memorized by millions of people in arabic (some don’t even speak it). The Qur’an challenges every single human being to find one contridiction in it or flaw in it and it challenges mankind produce another book just like it. Are you up for that challenge??
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