Sunday, June 17, 2007

Viva La Naturel!

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:

20 comments:

belledame222 said...

WOO! looks fab!

and i love VGG's hair.

i have long, coarse, wavy-curly hair and have been "suggested" that i use straighteners, blow it straight, whatever. i keep telling people: it's LESS manageable when i try to do that, it just gets frizzy and require constant maintenance. and, i don't like it. if i condition it and leave it alone, it gets soft and ringlet-y and looks great with very little upkeep required.

Wheelchair Dancer said...

Cute! Cute!

WCD

(Another natural girl)

Elayne said...

Looks lovely, Bint! Is it easier to keep clean in the summer when it's that length and natural?

debbie said...

I think it looks great!

antiprincess said...

you look beautiful.

kactus said...

Yay! It is beautiful, bint, just beautiful. And imagine all the time and money and hassle you'll save now :)

Good for you. You look like a queen.

sly civilian said...

looks nice! i'm always a fan of less maintenance and that cut fits you well.

Kilimanjaro: High and Lo said...

CUTE, CUTE, CUTE!! oh my, what beautiful brown skin you have and your eyes simply glow! chemicals, be gone....yay!!!!!! if you need tips on natural hair, check out.. www.nappturality.com or youtube's najahface @ http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=Najahface
--really bint, you are adorable!

----
thank you so much for the kind things you said. actually i thought about you yesterday in my alone-quiet time, wondering how you were. i read some of your posts today and wanted to give a tight, tight cyberhug! so imagine my suprise when i saw your message. YOU, love, are such a phenomenal, brave, brilliant woman! i know this to be true...and I am so thankful (ok, why am i starting to tear up, oh girl my emotions are something else) to have attracted you into my life and although you may never really understand , I really appreciate and love you in my own little, special way for giving me another way to view life and allowing me to peek into your world. thank you for being honest and sharing with us, thank you for your radiant, colgate commercial smile, and thank you for displaying what a HOT (hehe) natural woman you are.

your daughters are beautiful reflections of you! CHEERS to love, LIFE, and shared connections!

--India

deviousdiva said...

GORGEOUS!

Melissa McEwan said...

The haircut is fantastic and you look absolutely beautiful.

(Of course, you always do.)

jb said...

wow. really suits you. you look great. and you can always flat iron/press it if you want to wear is straight. that's what i do. : )

vegankid said...

i have to agree... CUTE!

vegankid said...

ps. you've been tagged

plain(s)feminist said...

That is a GREAT LOOK for you. Just beautiful. Not everyone can pull off a short afro, but it is totally flattering on you.

I wish, when I went through my white girl Jewfro stage in middle school, that my hair had looked as flattering as yours does. Sigh.

sokari said...

Great Bint - love it!

elle said...

you loook beautiful!

Natalie said...

That is HOT!!!! Very nice. My sister has almost the same do. One thing she does is braid the front inch or so when she needs to get all dolled up. It looks awesome!

Blackamazon said...

Teh GORGEOUS is devastating!

nexy said...

"...white girl Jewfro stage in middle school..."

heh, i did that in high school. but i never looked as good as bint :)

bint alshamsa said...

All of the support and sweetness I've received from y'all has just really made this a lot easier to deal with. I must admit that it is still a bit of a shock when I pass by a mirror and see a drastically different version of myself. However, I'm getting used to it and I'm already in love with how easy it is to manage. I just comb it out a bit and slap a head-band on it. Voila! I'm done for the day!

Power to the Afro-girls & Jewfro-queens!