When I had come to the decision to take my Shahada I took the four and half hour drive to talk to my parents in person. I wasn’t sure how they would take it but, I was very close to them so I wanted to let them know.
They were both together so I told them I had something to tell them, I informed them I had made the choice to convert to Islam. My Dad was open no worries, my Mom love her does not like change. A little back story when I was only two weeks old my parents had adopted me from an agency in Texas. Although I was an adult my mom suggested she wanted to return me and hadn’t signed up for this. My Dad made me feel comfortable and basically told me to ignore my mom’s comments.
After we had gone out to breakfast my Mom had decided that my choice was fine but, that we would pretend that I hadn’t made it so we shouldn’t talk about it. We traveled away to together with my brother and my Mom asked me not to tell anyone. When pork or any other food I could not eat was served I was to tell them I was allergic.
The year after on my return trip from Morocco when I arrived wearing hijab, my mom refused to go anywhere with me. She was really afraid of what others would think and I could not longer hide my decision to become Muslim.
As time has gone on we’ve had other disagreements but are relationship is returning to a strong comfort level again. I’ve gone through times where I do not want to celebrate Christian holidays. I try to remain away as much as possible but, in order to keep harmony with my family I exchange gifts and spend time with them. Last year my mom even approached a muslim sister asking where she got her scarf. She found out it was an Egypt and joked about not being able to get it on time for the holiday. Mom did purchase other scarves and gave them to me as a gift; time does heal some wounds.
Dr. Faheem Younus in his article “Why (And How) Should Muslim Americans ‘celebrate’ Christmas? discusses the dilemma during this part of the year.