I CUT OFF MY HAIR!
Just kidding. Anyway, I wrote a status that read:
“Hey Facebook! Here’s an announcement for you all (especially guys). Women who have natural hair are NOT desperate for any kind of affection. Some may be…but I’m NOT one of them. There’s a story behind this and I may even write a note lol”
Okay. It’s NOT a laughing matter. I’m NOT desperate. My decision to cut off my hair was not one of desperation. Nope, it was a conscious decision to do something that would ultimately make me a better person.
1 – I’m learning to love myself the way that I was created.
2 – I’m not losing my hair (some of you know that my decision to cut my hair was due to the fact that I was losing my hair from the relaxers).
3 – I’m saving money that I don’t have to begin with (go ahead and laugh at that one).
Now, back to the status. A guy, who was probably a nice person somewhere inside his soul, asked for my phone number. In my haste to apply for a job, I told him that I was in a hurry and that I wasn’t comfortable with giving out my number (BOTH true).
Why did this “man” proceed to call me a “Nappy Headed Bitch”?
In that statement, I found that I wasn’t in as much of a rush as I initially thought. I mentally ran through my arsenal of “Strip You of Your Manhood” comebacks and I chose to do something that totally kept his self-esteem in tact.
I walked away.
Why did this fool start to follow me and taunt me?
Now, I will never know why he followed me and continued to hurl insults at my back. But I did get to thinking:
Why is it that women who have naturals (that are not curly, “cute”, or exotic) are looked at as desperate? Why are we the ones who are asked if wearing our hair that way is a “cry for help”?
In cutting my hair, there was something both nostalgic and freeing about doing so. I was reminded of times (Sundays mostly) when my Mom would sit me between her knees and painstakingly comb my hair (Lord knows what kind of process it was). I was reminded of watching Apollo and other Sunday favorites on T.V. after she cooked the food (for up until Wednesday) that our family would eat. I was reminded of simply having to tie on a head scarf and NOT worrying about sweating my hiar out. I was reminded that I didn’t have to “assimilate” until major holidays when the pressing combs were brought out. I was reminded of the “Lady Down the Street” who braided my hair (I rocked the Williams’ sisters style, Beads and Braids, til I was like 9). I was reminded of sitting out on the steps and eating frozen cups with my friends. I was reminded of better times!
You know what I think of when I walk by relaxers in the store? $70, 8 hour sessions in hot ass salons with some random folks just walking in and out of the door letting all the air conditioning out. I was reminded of the greasy foreheads and the headaches that I got when I would go. I was reminded of having to sleep “pretty” because I didn’t want my style to fall. I was reminded of hair being pulled “too tight” because it would need to hold. I was reminded of NOT being able to swim, play outside for too long, go too near water, take a too long shower or bath, or just in general how much upkeep really came along with a relaxer.
But now that I think about it, maybe cutting my hair was an act of desperation. I wanted the freedom I enjoyed when I was younger.
And I got that with the help of some shears.
You know what else I happened to get?
A new found confidence. I have “Brothas” on the street corner refer to me as “Sista” and that makes me smile. I have cousins who don’t mind being natural because they see someone older who is and likes their hair despite what others may try to say. I have 30 extra minutes in the morning and I use them to sleep! I have saved $70+ a month and I’m paying things off. I have freedom and I’m cool with it.
You should be too!