My journey to natural has been an interesting one. I’m sure I’m not alone in that. I found that during this process, along with the kinks in my hair, I grew another layer of skin (a layer of the tougher variety).
Here are some excerpts from the screenplay of my natural hair journey to date:
“I liked your hair better when it was straight”
“This short afro is not my favourite on look on you”
“So when are you gonna get your hair back to normal?”
“The lady asked me if you model and I said no, how could she with her hair shaved off like that”
“Oh, is that how you’re going, with your hair like that?”
“I don’t usually like women with hair this short”
“I think men are just naturally attracted to straight long hair… even if a man grew up only seeing women natural, when he got older he’d want the one with the straight hair”
“here’s your ticket sir…” (ummm, yup, so not funny at the time)
Sound harsh? Sound familiar? Make you think, “dang people can be so ig’nant”?
As I dug up these stashed memories I realized that yes, we all have the capacity to be ignorant and hurtful sometimes. But, ignorance really is a matter of a lack of knowledge. It’s a matter of not seeing or understanding.
If you’ve heard one of the above comments recently or a long time ago and it cut you deep please don’t be like me and hold on to them. See them for what they are and let them roll off your back. It’s like me saying to an astrophysicist “you sure you want to submit that calculation with that poor penmanship?” WTH?!
As you write the screenplay of your natural hair life recognize the difference between informed and ignorant. Appropriately file the ig’nant in the trash and give the “sometimes I secretly watch your hair when you’re not looking and I drool… just a bit” a place on the highlight reel.