Road to Natural Entry #5 Makeda

I had a weird love hate relationship with my new growth. Back in college, I would sit in a boring lecture hall, tracing my fingertips along the wavy new growth. The small, bumpy curves were so soothing until I realized it was only less than a month since my last relaxer, and my new growth was already throwing a party. Can we say problem?

So, I started perming my hair more often. Every six weeks to be exact. I know, I know. That’s bad, but what’s the point of having straight hair if it wasn’t straight. (Nothing a good stylist could cure, but I was barely living on bologna sandwiches.) One day at the end of my spring semester in 2000, I thought, I might as well not even bother perming my hair. Decision made. I spoke to my mom about taking the natural route. She thought I was going crazy. So, I took all my self assurance with me to the nearest beauty shop and asked them to cut the perm out. “Are you sure? If I cut this, you’ll end up with a mini fro,” she said. Insert panic. I quickly hopped out of that chair and speed walked to the nearest exit. My thoughts? I don’t want a fro. Do I want a fro? Can I wear a fro to my summer internship? I can’t do a fro.

So, I went around the corner to the braid shop, and spent the next six hours of my life having my hair wound into headache-worthy braids. When it was finally over, I searched for myself under the thick, shoulder-length hair. It was a nice style, but it didn’t feel like me. It didn’t look like me either. Every morning for the next month, I stood in the mirror, and searched for myself. I was never fully there. I decided that the braids had to go. After my first day on the internship, I went home, dug out a pair of scissors and a handheld mirror, and cut the braids to less than four inches. I spend hours pulling out the remaining extensions, and trying to clip off my straight ends. It’s just hair, I thought, I can always put more in if this doesn’t work. Can you believe it didn’t work?! I butchered my hair and went bawling to my mom. My auntie ended up repairing the damage and when it was all over, I looked into the mirror. The first thing I saw was my face, and then I saw the cute, curly fro. It was just over an inch long, and it was all me. I would slick the edges down with gel and let the back curl tight. I finally felt like me.

Eight years later, I still love my hair sans the bad days when I threaten to grab a relaxer. But I could never do that. I love the versatility of my natural do too much. I can free my kinky curls into a fan-tab-ulous Keda-fro. The wet and wavy look is hot enough for the summer months. I’ve tried and loved the Eva-twists. I can even blow it out straight with pin curls or wear my classic slick 'n wavy bun.

I am not my hair, but my hair sure says a lot about me. Fun. Free. Me.
1 Responses:

What a wonderful inspriation!

Urbancurlz, I love this series. I am currently in transition and this has been inspiring me.


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