Well, I finally did it! The afro-queen is back! I have officially "gone natural". For the past eight and a half months, I've been sporting a ponytail while I allowed my hair to go un-relaxed (i.e. chemically straightened/"permed"). Last night, I finally got all of the old hair cut off.
My cousin down the street is a cosmetologist and she's been my partner in all of this. For the longest time I've been saying that I was going to stop getting perms but I'd always put it off and just get a relaxer instead. I'd chicken out because I wasn't sure if I was ready to deal with all that goes along with being natural. From my mother's side of the family, I inherited really thick hair that looks quite pretty when it's relaxed but I wasn't sure that I'd be able to tame it otherwise.
Well, that's just what I kept telling myself, actually. It didn't make sense really. VanGoghGirl has always worn her hair natural and I've been combing and brushing and braiding it for her the entire time. There's no reason why I couldn't do the same with mine.
And really, when it comes to maintenance, I've never been too good about that. The curling iron and I never did learn to get along. I still have a burn mark on the back of my neck from once when I zigged when I should have zagged. I can shampoo and condition my own hair and I can sometimes run a flat iron through it myself but, other than that, I was pretty reliant on outside help. My mom used to relax it for me but then that @#*$ Katrina came along and my mom wound up settling in Texas. Fortunately, there was my cousin who now lives right down the street from me but I just never felt like I had the time or energy to sit there for two hours and let her fuss with my hair.
I'm not a dress-up kind of girl. My cousin is the queen of new hairstyles. She's an at-home mom yet she still finds the time to keep her hair perfectly coiffed. Me? If it's too puffy to wear down, then it all gets thrown into a ponytail. I'm the sort of person who could wear the same thing every day and be perfectly happy (as long as it was clean).
In the end, I just got tired of having to find time to get someone else to fix my hair, so I just stopped. I figured that if I changed my mind, I could always go and get a relaxer and delay going natural for a bit longer. However, the months passed by pretty quickly and I was able to wear it in a ponytail all the way until I got it cut last night.
When I first looked at it, I panicked. I suddenly got scared about what people were going to think. Let's face it. Hair is important to a lot of Black women. I can't even begin to do that subject justice. Anyway, I when I got home, I realized that most of my anxiety probably had to do with the fact that I hadn't remembered to take my Lexapro. After an hour or so, I felt just fine.
I woke up this morning feeling really confident about my decision to cut it. I'm glad it's gone. I feel like I'm starting anew. I think it was a good move for me. I feel like a little brown pixie! So, here's a picture of the new 'do: