I can’t recall when my hair hasn’t been a struggle for me. It was always a part of my identity that I wasn’t the most comfortable with. Being raised in communities where I was a minority only made it worse. Not only was I dealing with the prejudice from my own race but people that I couldn’t even identify with felt the need to chime in on my insecurity too.
Is that all your hair? Are you wearing a weave? When are you redoing it? Such and such is black with long hair, how come yours isn’t long too? And the most dreaded question; Why doesn’t your hair grow?
My solution to this problem was getting a relaxer. I’d have hair that could blow in the wind, and was low maintenance and I felt I could finally join in when my peers talked about their hair. Big joke! The questions still came! And I’d get comments too! “Is this your real hair? Can you still wear it curly? Are you gonna put weave in it again? And I still got; when is your hair gonna grow?
I became exhausted. I felt like I was in the middle of a ring with 3 people scolding me. My race, people outside of my race and the last was my subconscious which was a combination of the two. My exhaustion turned into contempt when my hair was damaged but I continued to hold onto it. My contempt became neglect when I just didn’t care anymore and didn’t give my hair the love it deserved.
I began doing research on hair because of my envy for it to be long. I realized that relaxer had a chemical called formaldehyde that was extremely dangerous for hair. It caused many diseases(doing more research on this, so it can be more accurate). “ why would I continue to put a product on my hair that I know is detrimental to the health of my hair? This was the question that sparked my natural hair journey. I started to grow out my hair. As much as I didn’t want to place the dangerous substance on my hair, I didn’t want to let it go either. 2 years later, I was dealing with a bunch of turmoil in my life. Me and my family weren’t getting along and I was wanting a way out of a toxic relationship. I was so close to visiting a barber and being done with it. But instead, I realized the aftermath of that, I wouldn’t be happy with. So I went to the hair store, bought a pair of hair shears and cut the relaxed hair off.