Archive for Relaxer

You Cannot Free Everyone!

Posted in Sisterlocks with tags , , , on April 5, 2010 by blynsay

I am eight days away from my lock(loc) date and I could not be happier.  I have become a Sisterlocks poster child. 

One reason is because I am so excited.  I keep envisioning healthy hair, with no dependency on hair products or implements of torture (hot comb, flat-iron, curl wand, blow dryer, etc.).  I see days ahead when I no longer have to choose between working out or sleeping in a little longer.  I have to choose now, because I have to factor in style time, after I have “sweated out” my style on the stationary bike or treadmill.  Believe me, styling has won out over exercise too many times to count.

Another reason I am preaching Sisterlocks is to give rhyme and reason to the state of my napps.  This has been an ordeal, and I want folks to know I am not as crazy as I look.  I have to steel myself to look in the mirror, because my hair is less than cute right now.  I mean!  If I did not have a confirmed lock date (and had paid a non-refundable deposit), I might have succumbed to the lure of the “creamy crack”–relaxer! 

But, I am holding  strong and counting down the days.  I will not lie and tell you that transition has not been a little difficult.  One reason is that the only method of heat styling I am allowed is a blow dryer.  I am using it to the max, and every morning, I saturate the virgin hair with a little water and styling spray and blow dry away.  This straightens the roots for  the day, and gets me out the door.  Now, if  was going to continue the grow out process, as is, I would be concerned, because I find broken ends of relaxed hair around the room every time I use the dryer.  It was scary the first couple of days, but now I comfort myself by remembering that these broken, fried, damaged ends are taking themselves out of the picture and those will be less I have to cut off when my locs are mature and the permed ends go bye-bye.  It is a win-win situation.

You may wonder what this has to do with the title of this post. Well, nothing!  But, I just wanted to have a lemonade moment, and take you guys along for the ride.

Now back to the topic.

On Friday last, I took my son to the salon for a hair cut.  Yes,  I take him to a salon, because  he  is tenderheaded, like his Mama, and has curly hair.  The normal little boy buzzer cut  does not work for him and leaves him with whorls and cowlicks all over his head, so we need someone to cut it that has scissor skills.  He was a walk-in and we had to wait for an available stylist.  He is a regular and there are only a few there who cut his hair.  He played with some little sisters while we waited for a chair.  They had their Easter Sunday hair going on! 

Newly pressed and curled ponytails, bouncing in the breeze.  Now as the holiday was two days away, I envisioned a Saturday for them of rollers and do-rags to keep the style “fresh” and get them to the Sunday School program with straight and managed edges. You know it is only in our community, before a big holiday, that sporting a rag on your head at the supermarket is acceptable.  

When his turn came, I noticed an older lady in the chair next to him.  She had long, thick salt and pepper colored hair.  She and the stylist were having a conversation about cutting out her relaxer.  She had about 5 inches of relaxer, and an equal amount of un-processed hair.  I did not say virgin, because the new growth had been pressed.  I got excited.  I almost starting singing, “Dun, dun, dun-another one bites the dust!”, but held it in and just smiled and told her “Happy BC (big chop) Day”.  She looked at me a little strangely and I took the hint and turned back to my son and my own business.  I thought, this may not be a happy day, especially when you see 5 inches of hair on the salon floor.  I mean there was not hope for a ponytail or a quick bun to tame the hair, at the length that was left.  She was going to have to style her hair every day.  I thought, another one free!  But then I turned back, and low and behold saw not one but two jars of relaxer on the counter.  I wanted to tell the stylist, “Put down the brush and back away from  the head!”  Then I had to get all in the mix, and ask the lady the deal. 

She told me that she had been sick and not able to relax her hair for sometime, and finally her doctor said she could, and she was getting her hair done, so that she could look normal.  She had the old relaxed ends cut off, because they had been “damaged” by pressing, and was starting fresh.  It was then that I closed my lips, nodded and smiled and realized that we cannot all be free.  Some are not ready, some never will be and that is okay.  We all must have a place, within our own psyche, where we can be comfortable.  We all must be able to meet the man/woman in the mirror and like what we see.  For me, I look forward to a day, when I see mature locs, healthy and vibrant.  I look forward to no more burnt ears, no more relaxer burns, to more sleep in the morning, to working out and now worrying if my edges left the gym and went home before me, or my style drooped in the sauna.  

This is my happy place, and even though I am not there in the flesh, I have come to this place in my heart, in the present moment and I will not be moved.  If I could, I would free the world of our dependency on weave and relaxer and such, but this has to come for all in there own time, if it comes at all.  For some it may not, but I am going to love it enough for me and everybody else.