This is the fifth chapter of the Chop Chronicles, a section of the site that I created so that anyone who wanted to venture through my natural hair journey could witness the transition from the big chop onward with me. I shaved my head fully bald in July of 2013 and I must admit that I thought my life was over. Little did I know, it was just the beginning.
February: The Month Of Freedom And Change.
Big news! My workplace finally accepted both my hair and hair color. Freedom is beautiful. Unfortunately after a deeper examination of the handbook, they found that it is now my industrial ring that is unacceptable. At first, I was irritated, but soon after, I realized that I had finally gained the right that I wanted so desperately since the dawn of time. I can finally embrace the beauty of my own hair as I had been doing up until I began working there.
When I first started working at the arcade, my Mohawk was bright red and I was at my prime of self-confidence. Ninety percent of everyone I worked alongside hated it. It was unacceptable and I had to wear a wig to cover it up. Admittedly, I felt like I was hiding a part of myself that I had spent a whole previous year trying to fully love. It wasn’t as though I was ashamed of my hair all over again, but I certainly stopped giving it the love and care that it deserved because I mean, it was covered up by a wig about 85% of the time.
One big chop, an untamed afro and some pleading later, the battle was finally won. The general manager grimaced at my current hair, combed down so that the shaved sides of my Mohawk weren’t visible and replied that the style was “doable” despite having asked mere seconds later if I planned to look like this all of my life and how old I was. To be honest, I do plan to have awesome hair all my life. I spent the first nineteen or so years at war with my hair. It wasn’t pretty enough, it wasn’t long enough, I couldn’t do what I wanted with it. I’m twenty two now and I’m finally proud of the progress I’ve made within myself to embrace my roots, and despite any apprehension on anyone else’s part, being granted the freedom to have the freedom of my own hair is something that I will never grow out of.
Freedom is here to stay even if it means, there’s seven new things to be nitpicked at about, it’s worth it to be able to look in the mirror and truly be happy with myself no matter where I am.
Feeling The Change
Two years ago in November when I first shaved my head into a Mohawk, I was terrified. You couldn’t tell by looking at me but as a result, I kept a natural hair journey journal. It only lasted a week. (Talk about non-committal!)
In the spirit of maintaining a hopeful progression, I opened up a brand new notebook and started hammering out my current regimen. What works, what doesn’t work, what food is good for my hair, things to add to my grocery list, etc. I probably mentioned this in my last CC but I can’t stress it enough. Having a healthy diet is key to hair growth. It helps with stress, it gives you the nutrients needed to stimulate growth and it overall sustains you as a human being. I have been eating breakfast more and I’ve discovered that breakfast in itself contributes to a major change in my hair, my skin, and my attitude. The irony of it all is that I remembered being younger and all the things I used to eat and how I never had as many health issues as I do now. My hair was healthy and my mom made it a point to tend to it each day until my grandma took over the challenge when I turned sixteen. Therefore, it sounds like if I revert back to the great amount of responsibility and focus I was blessed with as a child, I could potentially conjure up a hair regimen that will produce similar results.
Changes To the Current Regimen
To my fellow naturalistas, especially the ones who also experienced a big chop! Do you ever just get overly excited for having hair? I’m sure it’s not just me! I get so ecstatic for the growth that I see, that I immediately start wanting to gift my hair for all its goodness. Uh oh, you know what that means. Buying more products! A bunch! Anything that sounds nice. Ladies, word of advice, save. Not all that glitters is gold and not everything works for every hair type!
When I got these products, I was so excited that I began using them all at once. Absolute no, no. Do you know how many products I used didn’t work with my hair type? Because, I don’t! Why? I was too caught up in the “glitter, shine, make your hair shimmer” that I didn’t realize that I had used 7 different creams in my hair! Suddenly, I started breaking out in dandruff. I’m not talking about, a little here and there… No I looked like Jack Frost’s long lost sister! I couldn’t decipher which of these new products was the culprit because my regimen lacked selection and structure. Yet, something had to have dried it out because I wasn’t experiencing that problem before!
My advice to all of those who love shopping for haircare products is to write down products that gain your interest and if you don’t need them right away, wait until you completely dissolve the bottom crevice of that last jar of the stuff you’ve been using for the past month before moving on to the next product that does the same thing but has totally different ingredients.
As for me? I’m going to wash my hair, narrow it down to my basic regimen and use one item at a time. One shampoo, one conditioner, one leave-in, one brand of hair mayonnaise, one (In my case, two) hair crèmes, one brand of moisturizer and one oil to seal said moisturizer. I’m going to use that item until it’s all gone, then write down the results of that product in my journal. How many times did I have to wash my hair, was the moisturizer doing it’s job, what about hair color? Did any of these items make it run away faster?
Remember that your journey is a learning experience, and that absolutely no one is a screw up by learning.
Viva La Change!
Now for my absolute favorite part: Reflection. I remember when I used to cycle through the “natural hair” tag on Tumblr and really feel the hair envy. I hated seeing girls with prettier hair than mine. This month, I’ve become so much more comfortable with my own hair. Maybe it’s because I’mn not required to hide it anymore. I don’t know but now when I look in the mirror, I feel proud. I wink at myself like “Hey, Mohawk girl! You’re doing it big today.” As for the natural haired girl wonders on Tumblr, I’ve accepted that patience will bring me the same results!
I’ve become so much more patient with my hair, with its growth, with the time it takes to make it look like it does on its best day. Patience has never been my strong suit (right next to commitment!) but my natural hair journey is definitely helping with that.
What about you? What changed in your natural hair journey since last month?
Don’t Forget To Subscribe!
Don’t I sound like your favorite YouTube personation right now? Haha, well! That sort of thing works! Now you have the ability to subscribe to my blog. It’s taken so long because to be honest, I can be pretty prehistoric when it comes to the internet, I had no idea what “RSS FEED” meant or anything like that, but now I’m learning! Anyways, every week you’ll get this awesome email showing you what’s latest and greatest here at JDcom. It’s also gives me this awesome option to email you guys about giveaways, discounts, and stuff like that! I mean, it’s a win, win!
I think that’s about it. So until next time, this naturalista is Hasta La Vista! 😀