MY JOURNEY TO NATURAL HAIR
11th of June Year 2014 was a memorable day for me and as such I think I have to celebrate the day annually. Wondering what I’m talking about? relax, you would understand in a short while. You know, anytime I see those African-American kids with their natural hair bun or afro, am always like “wow”, “beautiful”, “great”, “how I wish I had that kind of hair”. Okay maybe what I should have searched for was “how do they manage their natural hair?”
Google image Google image
Yeah, I love it and I covet it but then what was I suppose to do? I thought to myself that there was absolutely no way I could keep my natural hair.
Growing up in a kind of church that frowns at perming and you going just ahead and get your hair permed would definitely birth you a new name probably a “rebel” or what do you think? Or you happened to be the only female in your nuclear family who still uses relaxer…#coughs…I’m sure other members of the family are secretly praying for your change of mind just so relaxer would not stand against you on the judgment day…lol. Well, either religion or society, I believe people should be left alone to do whatever they choose to do as long as it doesn’t change who they are and or perhaps, religion and society should be permitted to influence them in their own volition without any sting of force or authority as long as its effect is on the positive side.
Okay don’t let me deviate too much, my family actually thought I preferred perming my hair even though they know perfectly well how strong my natural hair is! I mean my hair breaks comb! it spreads and grows wildly in a bushy way!
I remember one day when I was in senior class 1, I just started growing my hair back after I did a big chop (my very first time of cutting my hair ever since I was born when I wanted to resume Junior class 1 simply because the school rules said “no hair plaiting”), so I secured my afro with a hair band and a female teacher called me back and asked “is this hair or bush?” I was like “what???” but you know now you can’t say anything, else, you never can tell what the outcome would be but I tell you I never liked that teacher till I graduated from the school.
Even with my peeps understanding of the thickness of my hair, they still wanted me to stop using relaxer and probably start “threading “ugh? Thread? Me? with that accompanying pain? It’s a capital NO. The result could be malaria. What could they do? they eventually left me to myself and I know that in their heart of their hearts they are secretly praying to God to make me change…lol.
Many a times I shake my head while I watch them say whatever they so wish because they never knew how much I wish to grow my natural hair, that I would gladly ditch relaxers if there was another way to manage my hair and save myself from the harshness of chemicals, burnt scalp and also the health hazards that is attached to it.
The reason why I wanted to wear my hair naturally wasn’t because of religion, church or my family, not because pastor says so but because I covet those type of hair I see on the TV, I loved it,I wanted it, I craved it, I even blamed God for giving us Africans this type of hair I mean why didn’t He give all human same straight,wavy or loose curls type of hair? why does He have to punish us with this type of mane and in a way subjecting us to mental slavery for trying to look like the whites thus losing our self confidence and maybe also developing self hatred.
So how was I supposed to manage this thick, bushy, hard hair with all my cravings for keeping my hair natural????
We all know how Facebook is recently advertising random pages and groups on your newsfeed, right? So I’ve been seeing this particular group name too often and I kept on ignoring it because it’s about hair and I’m not such person that pays attention to hair. I can decide to grow my hair for sometimes and just wake up one day and ask someone to help me cut it #straight face#, I don’t care the hair grows wildly anyway it wouldn’t take much time with no effort to get it back, I also thought it was a group for some over spiritual set of people (SU as they are popularly called) with natural hair that sees perming a sin, in my mind I was like these people are funny they even created a group for themselves. At this time I had my short hair which I had been wearing in Anita Baker style for more than a year moreover what would I be looking for in that kind of a group full of “SU”. I didn’t see any reason to join the group at all.
before the big chop about a year ago I will miss my short hair look so dearly
But this day 11/06/2014 I’m sure I wasn’t the one that clicked the “join group” command…lol… maybe my shadow did or probably in my dreams or curiosity pushed me to check what they were even talking about, I tell you, it was the best decision I’ve ever made and the best group I’ve seen on Facebook, NATURAL HAIR BABES (NHB). If I had known it was just all about natural hair (popularly called VIRGIN HAIR) for everyone who desires it leaving spirituality aside, I would have joined a very long time ago.
I took my time to read posts, comments and visited their website www.naturalhairville.com and I was totally amazed. Pictures of people with their natural hair styled beautifully looking chicky and classy threw me off balance coupled with different recipes and procedures to deep condition the hair to come so soft and luscious and I was like “babe where have you been all these while?” so our African hair could be this beautiful and lovely! Lack of knowledge could be detrimental and keep you in a tightly fixed place while the world keeps revolving; I tell you, one will just remain there. I didn’t know that avoiding dryness and keeping the hair moisturized is the sole simple way to manage kinky hair and I was just there constantly seeking the help of chemicals and flat iron thinking there couldn’t be any other better way when cheapest recipe as “water” takes the front sit in managing natural hair, what a fool I was.
On this very day, I made up my mind to keep my hair, turned my back on relaxers and said a bye to burnt scalp #sigh just that I am so going to miss my Anita Baker styled hair that I wore for more than a year, I so love the look. NHB did not only opened my eyes to the goodness and the beauty of kinky hair, it also presented me easy and inexpensive way to care for my hair with all DIY procedures that some recipes could even be found in the kitchen! Like seriously.
It was almost close to three months I relaxed my hair, I was using flat iron occasionally but then I was already having undergrowth so I jumped to my feet and started practicing things I have read so far that same day. I applied olive oil, left it for some minutes then washed off. I felt the softness of the hair but that wasn’t enough though, I wanted some curls so I proceeded to do bantu knots OMG,
my amateur Bantu knots
my Bantu knot out
The result was super great. And then I religiously started practicing the LOC-GHE every night, the result I got was just too great, soft moisturized hair, little or no itching and ultimately moisturized scalp. Let me say it better, my long time friend that I already considered part of me disappears! i never knew all I needed to get rid of the almighty DANDRUFF was to keep my scalp from drying #SMH# how funny. Ignorance is a bitch! I really can’t contain the excitement this brought to me, everyone around me knows already that I am going on natural hair journey and my male friends can’t wait to see me fully natural #LAUGHS# they’ve been disturbing me to trim off the permed ends and I’ve been like “what’s your own sef?”
Foremost, I beg God to forgive me for blaming Him and also for not accepting the hair He gave me, ignorance caused it all. I am happy I found NATURAL HAIR BABES group on Facebook . May God bless the founder of NATURAL HAIR BABES group and all the ADMINS. It is the best thing that has ever happened to me so far. I am happy that my orientation about natural hair that it can’t be managed has changed. I am so grateful to all the people that encourage others with their hair pictures, regimen, and words to influence positively the lives of others to embrace our God given African kinky nappy hair. Lastly I am supper happy that companies producing relaxers lost one customer already.
I wish myself and every other person who has decided and who would still decide to wear their hair naturally a HAPPY NATURAL HAIR JOURNEY. #CYBER-HUGS.
SU- scripture union.
LOC- liquid,oil and cream.
GHE- green house effect.