Today I raise my glass to celebrate one year since I nervously sat in front of my younger sister with a pair of scissors and the rest as they say; is history. It’s also what I believe has undoubtedly been my bravest year thus far. I’ve done many things I thought I’d never do; including cutting all my hair off, quitting my job and leaving home. All of which, I am inexplicably proud of myself for mustering the courage to do.
My journey to natural hair has been one with many relapses. I’d gone months without relaxing only to become frustrated and throw in the towel. In fact, three years earlier, my younger sister had started hers and I thought she was equally brave and crazy. Although, admittedly, she has always been the former. Perhaps, in some way, her journey had slowly been preparing me for mine.
Last year, I decided that I would do it. Finally, do it this time! My plan included moving from mid-back length to bob without relaxing. During this time, I had many suggestions for products, styles, and salons. However, my greatest battle was overcoming the uncertainty of how I would look. Why would you cut your long hair? You able with your natural hair? You sure you know what you’re doing? were some frequent questions I was asked, and sometimes, I asked myself them too.
Today, without any hesitation I pen that I have loved every step of this process. From using and misusing my sister’s products to finally buying some of my own. I have enjoyed the soft, wet curls and impenetrable dry knots. Also, I have enjoyed the tapered look with that cute side part, the mini fro I currently have and trying my first twist out. In many ways, my hair or lack thereof, has given me the courage and confidence like never before.
My favourite part is inspiring others to cut their hair without worrying about how they would look because truthfully, you only look like yourself, with or without hair. Once at a health fair, a girl said “You’re brave. I can never do that”. The next time I saw her she was waving and shouting “I cut my hair! I cut my hair!”. I was happy to know I could help remind her that she was already enough of herself to care about anything else.
Eventually, I will stop cutting my hair and let the curls live. For now, I continue to shower from head to toe every day, seldom comb my hair, fiercely rock in all it’s untamed glory and encourage others to be confident with long hair, short hair or simply no hair at all. Really, it is a pity that we have believed all the crazy beauty standard notions are in many ways, conform to them.
Importantly, I’ve learned through doing this to never be so afraid of letting go of what you are accustomed to that you never have the courage to try new things and welcome new possibilities. Often, what comes back is better than whatever was! If you’re thinking of cutting your hair, just do it! If you’ve done it already, share your journey below.