So I stumbled across an old post I wrote around this time last year, when I had done my BC – this brought back soooo many memories! I realised I’ve come a long way from then. I just feel it’s so raw and real so I’m posting it as an encouragement – some of you may be going through this now so I hope it’s beneficial
Insecurity issue No 2: My Hair
So I’ve just taken out my hair from my lace wig and left it natural. I started 9 months ago on this journey because the relaxer was killing my hair so I decided to go natural. I cut off all the relaxed hair about 3 months ago and continued using my lace wig. I was quite shocked when I took it out to find my hair had actually come a long way. So I decided to keep the lace wig to the side and leave out my natural hair – which I thought was beautiful not because my hair was perfect but simply because I didn’t even know what my natural hair looked like any more and I just liked the fact that this is actually my hair unprocessed, raw: natural. I also think it’s really nice and fluffy
So what then is my point? My point is this: I left home confident and happy even though I knew people would be surprised. I went out, went to church etc. Yet the longer I remained outside, it became very clear that not only were people surprised – it was not a very pleasant surprise for them. My deep found joy (which I guess was not so deep as it was soon overcome with immense conscientiousness and insecurity) was soon destroyed with looks, laughs and comments such as ‘why did you take off your lovely hair’ ‘you need to relax your hair…(I’m growing it out natural) … Oh (with a bewildered and somewhat disappointed look)’ and even the dreaded ‘I get the look you were trying to go for’ ouch that one hurt!
You know its silly because I really really really shouldn’t care what others think as long as I’m happy. My happiness certainly should not be dependent on the reactions of others. Nevertheless, I returned home a dejected girl.
Oh of course I did get a few (err very few) ‘oh wow your hair looks nice’ but that was certainly drowned by the uproars of discord which eventually swallowed me. The day I started blissfully very soon became overshadowed with this deep hurt. I was … Am hurt. Of course I then went back to ‘oh now boys won’t like me or think I’m attractive’. Stupid, ungodly and immature as it is – unfortunately it went through my mind.
It’s as if I was no longer socially acceptable because of the simple fact of my hair. Disappointing…and disappointed.
The thought arises to me then: why?
I’ve never been one for extensions etc. (although there was a stage in early secondary school where I had to have braids – which I must add when people see it today think I had dreadlocks LOL) but when I decided to grow my hair natural I knew I’d have to.
It was like I took on a whole new personality…character. This girl was mature, confident…and had “good” hair. Now that’s all done away with what’s left is the insecure, young girl who doesn’t have good hair. But wait! I’m still me!! Nothing has changed I’m still me: laughing, crying, smiling – I just have my hair natural…and short. That’s all.
So what’s the big deal? It’s this: society has conformed us to an image that is not necessarily accurate. It seems as though if you don’t have long flowing hair or if your short hair is not relaxed then …err ewwww. Most afro-Caribbean girls have afro-kinky hair. Yet most Afro-Caribbean girls either have some form of extensions or relax their hair. It’s not bad, its not a sin. A lot of us do so that our hair is manageable (as we have been raised to believe). However unfortunately, most of us including the latter category have taken on another persona. So its like there is no me without this hair. Now that is a problem. It’s best exemplified when in between times of getting our hair done, we dread, we fret, we hide our hair the best way possible in shame because its in a state, we think, is unacceptable.
My question is this: without the processed hair or extensions, make up, earrings: who are you?
I’d made up my mind when God showed me I was insecure to beautify the inside of me as well as my outward form in its natural state – without make up, earrings etc. I want to perfect my natural beauty so that in the off chance all is stripped away it will be a ‘wow’ and not ‘oh my goodness…what happened’ That which is external fades away, but the inner beauty only stands to increase with time. I don’t want to be bound to those things (adornment) whereby I feel that I have no identity without them.
Then what do I do? Relax my hair again (which I hate to do) or hide under my extensions? Of course not! I’m gonna battle this out – Daddy didn’t raise no quitter! I refuse to conform to the superficial mindsets and precepts of this society.
So then with tears welling up but held back I close: The Lord has many things to teach me about me and I have yet to learn them. I’ve got a lot of growing up to do. - I’m certainly not as strong as I would have liked to think.
I just pray God will break me and as the clay in the potters hands, mould me. That He will give me humility in its fullness to learn. For you (the reader) may God reveal all the beauty that has been placed in you. Anything holding you bound, may you be released from it and set free in the knowledge of the truth about God and yourself. Amen.
I’m happy to say of course, just over one year later, I’m definely no longer insecure about my natural hair – I love it! I take care of it accordingly now and take immense pride in my luscious kinks and curls You should too
What are your views and opinions about this post?
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