Monday, February 9, 2009

Going the natural route, Part II

As I said previously, the relationship between a Black woman and her hair is a very poignant one. My relationship with my hair has had more ups and downs than any of my romantic exploits. I cried when I lost some of her after I put those naughty microbraids in; I hated her for a while and covered her with sew-in weaves and terribly orchestrated ponytails; I loved her when she was soft and shiny and caught everyone's attention... you see my point.

My desire to go natural is more so because of the fact that I feel too many Black women are rooting their existence in what is acceptable. Hell, too many people in general do this, but we'll stick with women, and Black women in particular.

When I thought of going natural, my first sensation was excitement. And then after sharing my idea, I started to think of why I couldn't go natural. For all of the superficial, foolish reasons I came up with, for the most part, all of my reasons consisted of variations on what I was and was not supposed to look like. (Just when in life are things actually how they are "supposed" to be?) And what in the hell does that mean, anyway?

As I've grown older, I've realized that, for as much as I wanted to be this non-practical, non-conforming artist-type, that I, in some respects, am actually rather practical, and I practice conformity (just like the majority of people).

Artist-type aside, as people in the world, we will inevitably face conformity to something. You can't just go around running red lights because you want to be a vehicular rebel, for example. I mean, you can, but that's pretty dumb. But, I found I was conforming to the wrong standards, and for the wrong reasons.

I can't do this because it's going to make so-and-so upset. I can't do this because then he'll think I'm less of a lady. I can't write about this because people will think this of me. I can't do my hair like this because so-and-so will say this about me.

Notice how it's always about what someone else thinks/will say/will feel/will do? What about what I think, wanna say, wanna feel, wanna do? Why is it that with so many things in life, we completely disregard how we feel, while placing the sole burden of our concern on what someone else will feel?

I used to think my beauty would somehow be reduced if I went natural. Like the weight of my value was in the straightness of my hair. That was foolishly erroneous of me. As I should have always known (I promise, I'm making up for the lost time), my beauty is in me. When my looks fade, if my hair was to fall out, even if my teeth fell out (let's hope that never happens, though, lol), my beauty will still be able to radiate from inside of me. Because that is where beauty really is. Inside.

Who cares if all the models in the magazines are always real light-skinned with "naturally" curly or wavy hair? Who cares if even the dark-skinned models get placed in these ads with these terribly off-color/off-texture weaves? Who cares if I spent $120 on a Chi flat iron my Freshman year of college? I want to see my natural.

After I washed my hair a week or so ago, I saw the curl in my edges, just resting so nicely against my hairline. And I was so excited. I had NEVER seen that before. And it made me happy.

So, *speaking to my naps/curls/kinks--whatever they are to be revealed as!* I think this is the start of a beautiful relationship :) And I must extend my deepest gratitude to fellow Blogger black girl with long hair, whose blog I stumbled upon this evening by divine accident, and who unintentionally encouraged the thoughts I was trying to bury in my conscience.

Here's to a new day! And the hair I was separated from in childhood :)


that one said...

I am SO EXCITED that you're going natural! I am too. I'm sure that this love-hate relationship that I have with my hair will start to have more love than hate soon'm ready to see the natural texture of my hair.

...and I definitely agree with everything you said about beauty. Our society is so consumed with beauty being about an outward thing, and not just an outward image, but an image that is decided by the majority. It's time to STAND OUT. lol.

I look forward to pictures!


Miss Malorie said...

Yes, I know... I'm already leaning towards the "love" relationship with my hair. It's braided in cornrows right now, but I can see the natural texture right in the back... and I would be lying if I said I didn't spend countless minutes exploring and analyzing this small area of hair, lol.

But yes, it is time to stand out, for real! I have put the perm box down, and I don't anticipate going back! I look forward to seeing pictures from you as well! :)

Thanks for the comment!!

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