Salaam and hey!
I'm attempting to dress more modestly and thus I felt it was time for a shopping spree!
But because I feel guilty about my splurging I have decided to sell some of my clothing (and some unwanted jewellery and accessories) which I don't feel befits my new modest way of dressing on Ebay.
I in no way ever dressed completely inappropriately, for that I have my moral high ground mother to thank because she felt even though I don't wear a hijab she did not want others to get the wrong impression of me.
The offending articles of clothing which I cannot really justify having any longer and which can't really be altered to be more modest include: jeggings, skinny jeans (I don't intend to purchase any more skinny jeans but the ones I have I will wear with longer than knee length dresses), a few party tops, and other random items which aren't to do with modesty but more that I don't wear them anymore.
I would never dictate to anyone else what they should and shouldn't wear, I feel we are all accountable for our own actions and only Allah (SWT) knows our true intentions regarding our reasons for our chosen apparel.
So why did I dress immodestly?
Firstly, a definition of modesty. Again, everyone has their own definition of modest. With me I feel it is immodest to dress in a way that reveals the shape of one's body thus drawing unnecessary and unwanted attention.
I didn't actually feel I was dressing immodestly, I felt liberated and felt rather sorry for other girls who I saw dressed in loose clothing. I did respect them though. I just wanted to look nice and if I'm wholly honest a part of me wanted attention. Not in a lewd manner but just to know that I was attractive. Then there was also the fact that it was easier to dress immodestly as the clothing in most shops catered to this, as did the constant influx of advertising and just peer pressure/conformity (haraam is the easy way I suppose).
But when I did receive attention from males I didn't really like it ironically.. it made me feel uncomfortable.. and if I felt I was inappropriately dressed and thus receiving inappropriate attention it made me want to cover up my nice (but revealing) outfit because I didn't want to be "checked out" by every Tom, Dick and Harry. Also I felt sometimes if a male was speaking to me in a way that they were courting me I wanted them to like me for me, for my personality, my quirks, my intelligence , my sense of humour and not for anything relating to my physical appearance.
In this regard I gave out mixed messages, yes I wanted the validation that I was attractive, I wanted to be dressed nicely because I genuinely love fashion but I didn't want to have a fling but a few guys who approached me and thought that I did were then confused because I wasn't "up for it". Alhamdulillah I have never had a relationship with a male, not really for just for religious reasons alone but also that my mother instilled strong moral values within me which refrained me from acting upon impulse and desire.
That's not to say I have never liked anyone, I have had my heartbroken when a courtship became too heavily loaded emotionally and I developed really strong feelings for someone (love perhaps?) but the guy in question wasn't ready for committment and wanted to have flings basically...
This whole idea of dressing modestly did not come to me overnight I have thought about it for quite sometime, sometimes quite regularly (like now) and at other times it's just at the back of my mind. But it's always there. Then I started youtubing modesty even watching a few Christianity based videos on the topic and I felt it was the right thing to do.
There was also a seemingly insignificant incident when I was on the bus. A lady got on the bus who was wearing a low cut top and a mini skirt. She had a beautiful body and face and the confidence to match. Of course she elicited admiring glances some overt and some subtle, she seemed oblivious to the attention or maybe she was used to it.. anyway when she got off the bus with the bus going straight ahead and the woman going in the opposite direction, as the bus sped away several males did a 180oC turn just so they could "check her out". Observing this I wondered had this ever happened to me yet I had been totally oblivious to it? Was it supposed to make me feel good about myself? With the woman on the bus did any of these males seek to get to know her, find out what makes her tick etc. It was then my intent was resolved that I would be slow about it but I wanted to dress modestly as I'd rather evade those amorous stares.
I also feel dressing modestly can guard you from a fellow woman's jealousy/envy. Not all women are like this but in all honesty I have come across some who do not seem to be happy you have lost weight or have a nice figure or hair etc. instead of feeling happy for you they seem to see you as competition (whether that is subconscious or conscious I do not know) as they want what they perceive (emphasis on the word perceive) you to have. Although ironically, if they had what they wanted they would perhaps start wanting something else... I know all women are not like this but there are some who are.
So modesty for me guards you but also allows individuals to focus on your personality, your nature your soul. Since dressing in this way I feel liberated lol I am more than my face and body which I am grateful for but they should be a bonus, the cherry on the cake if you like, just for your husband. Allah (SWT) knows best (:
So this was supposed to be a short introduction followed by a haul lol. One thing you should know about me is that concise is something I rarely achieve lol! The haul will follow shortly, probably in a few days as I have done some online shopping and I awaiting my modest (modest on the pocket too!) purchases. I may also do a modest inspirations blog post about women (not necessarily muslim) who inspire me with the way they dress which can be applicable to the modest muslimah.
Until the next blog post,
Salaams and Goodbye (: