im a muslim & im proud

my mother and aunt made the ‘mistake’ of going to town today. there was a pride walk. they walked in through the door, the first thing out of their mouths proclamations of disgust and curses. disgust for those vile homosexuals. those unholy gays. those revolting animals. my uncle was present too. he said this is why he supports donald trump, because he’s disgusted by those gays too (keep in mind that my uncle is muslim and isn’t even in a position to support trump as we dont even live in america) 

my mother says she fears for the country we live in because surely, sooner or later allah will punish them with either an earthquake or flood and ‘we’ will perish along these repellent gays. she says our country has gone to hell and it’s only a matter of time now. 

she says a lot of ‘natives’ in the country that she knows are against gays too. she told us about her friends who say they would disown their kid if they were gay. she told us how one of them said he would stick a knife up his son’s anus and make sure it came out of his mouth if he were gay. she told us she’d do the same. she told us how she didn’t care if she went to jail for all her life. that both her and my father would kill their child if they turned out gay. then she prayed against it on the spot ‘allahu manajina’.

she continued with her pleas to god, cursing them, praying for the eradication of homosexuals.  

i was washing dishes as she came in and i just froze. my heart has never beat so fast. i’ve never been so scared. all that time, those curses and threats felt so vehement and personal, i was thinking, does she know? did she find out about me? 

she gave me a strange look as i left the room and i know i should have said something in agreement or something of the kind to avert her suspicion. but i couldn’t do it. i’ve done it many times before, feeling my stomach broil and my heart being ripped in two as agreed with her before how vile and nasty homosexuals are, agreeing with her that allah should wipe them out like the people of lut. but today i couldn’t do it. i was scared out of my mind in that moment and knew it might tip her off, at the least make her think i sympathize with those gay animals which is a horrifying thought in itself to her, but i couldn’t agree. 

i don’t know, maybe it’s that i’m growing more and more restless confining my real self, hiding it away like a dirty secret (which to them, it is), or that even in the midst of fear, thinking of all those people openly gay and walking down town, unafraid and proud of themselves game me some courage too. 

but i have never felt such pain and disgust and fear as i have felt today listening to my mother speak like that. she’s always done it but it’s never hit me like it has today. i think it’s the realization that she’ll never accept me. neither her nor the rest of my family will ever accept me. they’d rather see my corpse. and without doubt, i know now that i have to leave this place. the greater the distance between us, the safer and happier i’ll be. 

i still feel heartbroken, hearing them inadvertently reject and disown me again and again, it’s still the same knife piercing me again and again. i don’t think it’ll ever get easier but at least it’ll stop if i leave.

I am Catholic.

That is all.

Wait. You know what? No, that’s not all.

I will practice my religion regardless of anyone’s problems with it. I do not care what conquerors did centuries ago. I do not care that you disagree. I do not care that Christianity as a whole rejects us like that cousin you avoid at Christmas.

I am Catholic. The only thing that will stop me from being Catholic is if God himself tells me so.

Schools: do not EVER teach a history lesson, and then have the reason for the horrors of 1609 be “because the king was Catholic”.
That’s not right.

Don’t claim that “Catholics worship Mary”. We don’t, we respect her.

Don’t EVER say “ there is a difference between being Christian and being Catholic ”. There is none.

Don’t tell me that because I don’t follow every practice of my religion that I’m “not devout”. I pledged myself to my religion when I was fifteen.

Catholic people are Christian.

Do not speak about my faith as if you know what you are talking about when you don’t have the decency to say the right things.

Do you ever think about the fact that Zayn has probably watched Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham like a million times and he probably sits and sings along to suraj hua madham and yeh ladka hai allah and he sat one day and requested the remix to bbc asian network and then last night, he got to eat dinner and talk to sharukh khan, the guy he probably wanted to be growing up and srk called him a cool guy and said ‘may Allah (swt) bless him’ and zayn must have been dying from excitement but remained cool as his childhood idol just called him a cool guy. 

I’m crying.

You know…?

Im so proud and grateful to be a Muslim. But im also so ashamed to be a Muslim because of my depression and mental illness.

Friends keep saying “Just because you’re depressed, just because you suffer mental illness, it does not make you less Muslim. You’re still a Muslim. Allah still loves you. Dont listen to those who judge you!”

But still… how a Muslim, a niqabi, gets depressed? Im so ashamed when i think about it too, i know what people think about me but i cant also control it. I dont know what to do. And it makes me blame the past, blame for what has happened to me. It makes me angry and in the end i keep throwing and ruining things around me or even hurt myself.

Ya Rabb… what kind of slave i am to You… :“((