On September 6th, It will be 2 years that I had my big chop (cutting my relax hair) and became all natural. So It’s a good time to reflect on my natural journey and analyse how I did so far.
So far I feel that I made the right choice because I discover my hair texture and embrace It. I remember the day after my big chop my hair shrinks due to humidity (Central Africa Baby!). I didn’t know what to do with it and how to style it. My reaction was :
- I was prepare for this change
- I didn’t research this part
- I need time to think
Three days after, I went and install a weave on to help me understand better what I was getting myself into. I always keep a protective style for 4 weeks tops so I had enough time. I watched a lot of videos (thank you YouTube) and I joined the local natural hair community and 2 whatsApp group about natural hair.
Let’s go back to the tittle of this article, why I stopped relaxing my hair, I have mostly 3 reasons:
- Length! I wanted length so bad, but, after 3 years of only relax my hair twice a year (yes, I was doing hair transition before knowing what It was. I will talk about that In another article). I spotted pictures of nappy with long hair and I was so impressed and I wanted the same.
- Versatility: from curls to straight hair, you can only do that when you are natural.
- Relaxer chemicals: The chemicals needed to relax your hair have to be strong to work and Its damage the hair structure lead to brittle hair.
After 2 years, here is what I gain of having natural hair:
- Being comfortable in my own skin: I was nervous the first time I decide to rock my TWA (Teeny Weeny Afro) the first time. I didn’t know how my friends and family would react. Going outside with your Afro says:”this is who I am, take It or leave It”.
- A community (‘sister”): My hair helped me bond with some acquaintance who became friends “natural sisters”.
- Selfcare: by learning to take care of my hair, I took more time for myself (hair, skin, body)
- Creativity: Someone help me realize that don’t do the same hairstyle two days in a row. I just can’t, I NEED to add something, even if It’s a bow.
So far, It’s wonderful experience. I am super happy with my hair and I keep learning. Having my hair long is still my ultimate goal, but I learned that healthy hair is the priority.