My conversion to Islam was long overdue.
I started learning about Islam from a very young age -(14 to be precise), but I only took my Shahadah in my early 20s.
Allah au Akbar! Allah guides whom he wills!
I always had an interest in religion.
Growing up in a predominantly Sikh household, I was surrounded by it.
But although I was surrounded by my families core values, I knew deep in my heart as a child - that it just didn't make sense to me.
No matter where I went, who I spoke to..... my heart was unsettled and my curiosity about my questions grew and grew.
E.g. From a young age I always believed that something would happen after your death in this dunya. But when researching other religions it didn't make sense to me. I had so many questions. But none of the answers I received made sense until Alhamdulliah I researched into Islam.
Even at the age of 14, SubhanAllah - Islam made sense to me.
It was simple. It wasn't overcomplicated.
Instantly I felt this relief. I felt safe.
This relief made me become less arrogant towards people, and more tolerant towards people. Something that a young female will find hard when she is growing up!
However, I was a 14 year old girl staying in a strict Sikh household. I had this battle inside me going on in regards to my beliefs and at the same time seeked my parents happiness.
As time went on I started to learn more and more about Islam, I honestly knew then that it was the right path for me but I let my fears get the better of me.
Honestly speaking, I should have taken my Shahadah then -but tried to justify it to myself that if Allah (SWT) had wanted me to become Muslim he would have made me one from birth. Not only this but, I allowed the fear of coming from a Sikh family frighten me into not committing to this decision as I felt I would loose my family.
At this point I became very confused spiritually and felt very lonely.
My thinking was that because I came from a sikh family and it is unheard of - I cannot do it.
See how easy shaytan can influence us. SubhanAllah.
I remember feeling like I didn't belong anywhere.
I knew I should have taken my shahadah but I didn't.
I did however continue to change my lifestyle growing up, e.g. participated in Ramadan alone without my family knowing, made a conscious effort to read Quran. Dressed more modestly etc.
I thought my life would be easier if I had given up all the wrong things.
But deep down I wasn't happy.
I use to think about all the major events and milestones that had taken place so far in my life, and at every point I either was thinking of becoming muslim or desired to but always over-thought about what would happen after?
I knew the truth path but still hesitated to take the decision.
Fast forward to me now and alhamdulliah I can now say “IM A MUSLIM ” .
As I expected my family disowned me at first but then as the years have gone by a select few have now come to terms my personal decisions.
They may not agree with my choices but at least some of us can be mutual.
I don't view Islam as just a religion but also a way of life.
I am still learning and not perfect but InshAllah I will get there.
I feel truly blessed that Allah (swt) persevered with me, and blessed me with the strength to become part of his deen.
To others who are thinking of coming to Islam , please don't leave it that long and suffer the mental anguish I did for years, and don't fear your family or this dunya for you know what you are doing is right, and Inshallah the rewards will not only be paid here but also in the akhirah.
Remember we shouldn’t fear anyone but Allah!