For years I debated about returning my hair to its natural state.
In 2009, while I was married, I mentioned to my husband that I wanted to do a big chop to get rid of all the hair that still contained relaxer and to transition to locks.
Surprisingly, his response was a big fat no. This was something that we had never discussed, so I didn’t understand what the issue was. He told me he didn’t like women with short hair, nor did he really care for locs on women.
Growing locs was my act of defiance. It freed me from a relationship that no longer served me.
I gave him the whole, “it’ll still be me, my hair will just be different” speech. I reiterated that I would be the same woman he’s known for the last 11 years — and he still wasn’t on board with the plan. In that instance, the unconditional love I thought he had for me was no more. I was hurt and a little upset, but I decided against changing my look to keep the peace. As usual, I didn’t speak up for myself.
Fast forward a year later, my marriage was ending and I was figuring out what to do with myself. One day while sitting in the living room, I had one of those movie moments. With my relationship practically ruined, I moved back home and I was completely over everything. I grabbed a pair of scissors and before I really knew what was happening, I started to see chunks of my long, thick hair lying by my feet.
I knew when that moment of insanity was over I would probably burst into tears, but for now, I was happy. This was my moment of defiance and there was no turning back! Cutting my hair signified a brand new start. I didn’t have to worry any longer about what anyone else thought. This was my hair and I would do with it whatever I pleased.
Snip by snip, as the weight on my head got lighter, so did the weight on my heart. I was finally going to do it, I was going to start my locs.
Also from 32 Letter:
Dreadlocks have always been beautiful to me, but I did not lock my hair to be fashionable. They were a representation of the spiritual, physical and mental changes I was going through. As my locs grew, it was a reflection of my personal growth as a woman and as a mother.
The choice to do better for myself began with that one simple act of defiance. Now, almost 4 years later, my locs have grown much longer and the health and beauty they possess is equivalent to mine.
In other words, their fly matches mine.