The Hair Chronicles

Like most black women, I've had many, many, many different hairstyles over the years.  "Natural" is a label that I've only had for the past decade or so, but what about the other years?  I'm not going to pretend that I never had a perm, that I never had weave, that I never dyed my hair some ridiculous shade of red.  My hair journey has been a long (and interesting) one.

However, instead of describing my "hair journey" in my own words, I wanted to share this with you, loved ones..... the perspective from someone who loves me and has known me my ENTIRE life, and has seen all the various manifestations of my hair (and myself) over the past 30-some years, written shortly after I cut my first set of locs.......


I am sorry you had drama :( You should call me. As your sister who has known you since birth... your locs are not what I know you for. I have seen ALL your hair drama and triumphs. At birth you had the biggest and most luscious head of hair in a giant baby afro (I have the pic).

Then long pigtails and braids with the ball barrettes that mom had to chase you around the house campaigning for help from your sisters and sit on you to comb (this still makes me laugh).

You managed to escape the jerry curl years (I block those out and deny they happened) which left the rest of us short and shaggy. Then there was the perm years with the high pony tail and the rest down the back... do not forget the big bangs that we used to fight about on the way to school because I was hot and needed the window down and you were in the back and needed to keep your bangs from blowing all over (I cherish some of the memories from us going to HS together).

Do not overlook the poetic justice braids during the pro-africa- do-the-right-thang-public-enemy-de-la-soul years (I cannot believe I wore nylon hair... kankalon?).

Then you came to the Purdue University campus to visit me... and had the salon and cut that long hair all down to a very short curly natural. All the ladies in the salon were in shock and awe. It was like a scene from Waiting to Exhale. Or like the episode of The Game when Mel chopped off her pony tail [starts at 4:20] and Tausha said "Every time a woman cuts off her hair, somewhere a little black girl cries!"  The ladies in the shop acted like you committed a rash act but you made a decision and did it. It was not an accident.

Next you grew it out... afro, twists, THEN the locks, then color locks. Now no locks and a fro again. I see the gasps in some of the post and it is like being in that salon again… just shock because it is natural hair.

So see… I know and love you for the head under the hair… not just your hair. And I personally know you and my lovely sister the giraffe. :) So roar like a giraffe or do what ever sound you think they make when they mean business!

(FYI: Giraffes don't make sounds.... but if they DID, this is what I'd want mine to sound like when it means business*)

(*and for those not in the know, that's the sound Perry the Platypus from Phineas and Ferb makes.  He's a semi-aquatic egg laying mammal of action.)

1 comment:

sincereR said...

This is great. My styles were so outrageous that I try to burn the pics when I find them. lol Congrats on starting the new blog. I look forward to reading.