I used to think that I didn’t play into identity politics, or I like to think that I expertly tricked myself. My hair has always been a defining factor in my life because my identity was wrapped in it. It wasn’t until I big chopped and went natural that I realized how unstable my identity really was. Usually when I hear people talk about their BC experience I often hear how liberating it was and how it was the best decision they’ve made. That was not my story at all.
The cutting away of my hair was traumatizing and it hurt. The reason I had such a negative experience was because I didn’t know how insecure I really was. My hair, my glory, was now gone and I had about 3 inches of hair. Can you imagine the first time I felt the wind on my scalp? Now, those of you haven’t experienced this feeling might make light of it, but lawd I got spooked. Anyway, the growing process of my hair is highly significant because it signaled my spiritual growth.
I rarely hear people talk about the importance of their natural hair journey as it relates to spiritual awareness; however, I think this understanding is unique for several reasons: my hair was both my hiding place and my refuge, my identity was wrapped in external things, the growing of my hair is the growing of my spiritual consciousness.
Because I’m aware of the aforementioned things, I rarely let other people style my mane. My hair is personal. The three years that I spent growing it represents three years of self-awareness, trials, failures, and comebacks. Would you just let anyone in your bank account? No. Why? Because it’s personal, right? That’s how I feel about my hair. My hair and I have had many trials–from big chop, to second mini big chop because of hair dye, to maintenance. We have formed a rhythm through dance called hair journey and it’s sacred.
Just like my walk with Christ is scared to me, and I don’t just let anyone into my life, this hair of mine, that has an identity itself is sacred.
How has your hair journey impacted your life?