I still can’t believe it’s been an entire year since deciding to Big Chop! In all honesty, it wasn’t that much of a big chop being that I’ve always been a fan of short hair. Nonetheless, it was scary and thrilling at the same time. The initial plan was to refrain was relaxing, blow dry and flat iron my hair until I thought it was at a reasonable length for natural styling (I guess this was my attempt at avoiding stage TWA). And the plan was working like a charm! Until the DMV’s scorching summer heat made its debut. I then considered braids, but someone who shall remain nameless indicated not liking braids and “fake hair”. “Fine! I’m just going to cut it off then”, I remember blurting out. “Do what you want to do.” And that was the end of it for about a week or so.
I remember wanting to wait until the summer program I was coordinating came to a close. You know, just in case I looked a hot ass mess. Kids (particularly MY students) can be brutally honest and the last thing you want after getting a hair cut you’re not particularly happy or confident with is to have to listen to little people talk your head off about said haircut.
The day of my big haircut I asked my hairdresser a gazillion questions as she chopped. I tend to be extremely talkative when I’m nervous. She was so patient with me. I sent pics to a few friends sharing a few steps of the process. They cheered me on, via text, as I anxiously awaited to see my “curls”. Oh…I even added color (burgundy) to the top my of my hair for a little extra spice. When I was finally swirled in the direction of the mirror, with most of the hair that was once on my head resting lifelessly on the surrounding floor, I almost cried. What. The. Fuck! It wasn’t what I expected. At all. I expected more length. I haven’t relaxed my hair in months! This is all the new growth I got? I expected juicy, lush 3A-ish curls. But nah, my hair was doing something totally different. “This is it!? Where are the curls?”, I needed to know. I felt as if I looked like a boy. I sent one friend the final product. She took way too long to respond. Ahh shit! This was a bad idea. Should’ve just gotten braids! I was a nervous wreck the entire ride home. This man already indicated not being in favor of this move and now look at me, looking all boyish. Breathe Rhonda. Breathe. Why are always so impatient?! Just relax girl. Breathe.
When I arrived home no one was there. Yes! Thank you Lord for this much needed alone time so I can sit with my decision and, more importantly, play around with my hair a bit (what was left of it). I may have added a part on the side (or taken it away), added a little more water and gel, and started finger styling my teeny-TWA. Finally, it was starting to look like something. Thank you Lord. Relief. I was no longer in panic mode. After putting on some earrings and red lip color, I really started to feel as if I had my swagger back. I can do this. I can totally ROCK this! I knew I was feeling myself because I posted up on The Gram. Aye! When the guy I was with at the time saw my new do, he was not as impressed as the friends from IG and Facebook. “I hate it. Don’t ever do that to your hair again.”, if my memory serves me correctly, were his exact words. And I guess those words could’ve taken some of the wind out of my sails, but they didn’t.
I was a hair junkie at first. But not so much anymore. My go to’s now: Shea Butter and Amla & Olive Heavy Cream by Qhemet Biologics. I miss the wash and go days occasionally, where I’d load my hair up with gel and see something like curls, but I’m loving my present style and length. And I’ve recently learned I have way more love for dry twist outs than I do wet twist outs. Don’t ask me what I’m going to do with the four tubs of gel hanging out underneath the bathroom sink. I’m not certain what else this journey has in store for me. Maybe color. Maybe not. For now, I’m loving my funky-short-hair-don’t-care cut , with the retro parts on the sides. I’m loving my thick, wooly texture. Loving the fact that I’m no longer allowing chemicals to sit on and burn my scalp. Loving the fact that I’m creating my own definition of beauty. “Well, this is how my hair grows out of my scalp”, I told him. In other words, this is me…naturally.
I honestly can’t remember a time feeling more confident, more empowered, and more liberated than while on this new hair journey. I intend to bask in this territory a while. For a good while.
Happy One Year Naturaversary to me…