Monday, September 6, 2010

The Decision to Go Natural...

After much trepidation and research, I have decided that after twenty-one years of perming my hair - I'VE HAD ENOUGH!!

I am tired of being a slave to my perm. Some of you know what I mean, right when you hit that 6-8 week point depending on the thickness of your hair, your ends start splitting off and you have to make that appointment for a touch-up. I've seen way too many of my beautiful friends and family make the switch, and finally feel ready for it to be my turn.

Don't get me wrong, every single person I've spoken too, including two hair stylist have warned me that it won't be easy. The process itself can take up to a year, and mid-point most women give up and go back to perming. Especially when the hair starts falling out in clumps during and between washes and the new growth starts to emerge.

My cousin was my first source of inspiration, actually make that two cousins. One that's been natural for quite some time (hey, Rhonda!), and then my cousin/little sis (hey, Manda!) who recently made the switch. I haven't even seen Manda's natural roots yet since she's been sporting her wig until all of her new growth has reached the length she wants, but I've heard that her new do is too cute for words. She like many others took drastic measures and chopped her hair off.

I even spoke to Aisha over at Cosmopolitan Kids, who rather than shock me with her advice had her close friend explain the process to me. I'm paraphrasing here: "I should have listened to Aisha who told me to cut it all off. Instead I got to the point of utter frustration, called her crying and took a scissor to my own hair!" Aisha confirmed that she wished she had it to do over again to take her own advice. She also explained that some women think that the advice is "hate" for the longer hair sisters that all natural chicks want everyone else to be naturally short too, but she says it's just advice to help with the inevitable future frustration. She did try to make me feel better saying that it is so much easier and healthier going natural, and that she loves it this way.

The one thing I've loved about my hair has been its thickness and length and you all saw how I chopped some off this summer (a meager 2", still was a lot for me), but to chop it all off to start from scratch is, I'm a punk, I know, and I'll say it: I'M SCARED AS ALL HELL! I'm hoping to do this just a little less drastically. When I make Maddy's appointment to get her new braids put it, I plan to have a nice long chat with her stylist at the Natural Roots Hair Salon.

My last perm was on Friday, July 9th, approximately 8 weeks ago. Already my hair has started to break in its usual "time for a touch-up" way. What I'm hoping to try to do is cut 1-2 inches of the dead permed hair off every 2-3 weeks. This way the cutting is gradual while the new growth is taking place. I'm a huge fan of the keeping it braided while I transition or even the let me throw a wig on top of it so I can luxuriate as the transition takes place below the surface. Either way, I'M DOING IT!!

When I asked hubby his thoughts, his first reaction was "fine, as long as you don't cut it all off" and his second thought was "if this is what you wanted to do, why didn't you do it while you were pregnant with Link and you weren't perming?" Dang, would you believe he actually had a good idea, albeit too late, but I wish I had thought of that!!!

I hope you'll all share any stories you may have, point me in the right hair direction, laugh when I laugh, cry when I know I'm going cry, and make this next journey in hairdom not as painful as most say it is!

Here are some blog links on going/keeping natural that my cousin sent me:

12 comments:

MsBabyPlan said...

Great decision, I am so happy that I slowly did the transition. I love my new journey, locs are my favourite.

shatterproofglassdolls said...

YAAAAAAY! Congratulations to you! It won't be easy all alot of the time at first, but I will fabulous ALL the time!

Cosmopolitan Kids said...

Another great site - a good friend of mine glamazini.com

Good luck with the process!!!

Chocolate Mom aka Blupoetres said...

@MsBabyPlan - Thanks!!

@SPGD - Praying that it will all be fabulous in the end!!

@CK - Thanks for link and stopping by!

Shanita said...

I started my natural hair journey about two years ago. I rocked braids for four months until I had enough new growth to do the big chop. Ummm...I almost had a panic attack. I will admit that I didn't like my natural hair at first. I thought it would be soft and wavy, instead it was rough and tightly coiled. But after I experimented with different products and different natural styles, I fell in love with my hair. Kinks and all. All that to say... Hang in there and good luck to you. The 'all natural hair' process is a long road but you'll love it in the end. It's so worth it!

Chocolate Mom aka Blupoetres said...

@Shanita - Thanks I need to hear more positive stories!!

Ms. Understood said...

Congrats on your decision! I've been natural for almost six years. I have no intention of relaxing it again. Does it get tough and frustrating? Yes. But I think it's worth it. I was getting irritated with my hair (took to long to style, knotted ends), so I cut off a little over 2 inches. . . Now I miss it, LOL. Now I'm on a mission to grow it back. When I BC'ed back in December of 2004, I cut my hair off to less than 2 inches.

Chocolate Mom aka Blupoetres said...

@MsU - See, there's that word again: BIG CHOP! Makes my belly go: FLIP FLOP!! LOL

Tracita Linda (Tracey) said...

YAY! Congrats...here's another website. You can even send them your "story". I'm going into 3 years next March.

http://newlynatural.com/blog/

Chocolate Mom aka Blupoetres said...

@Tracey - Thanks Mama!! Just checked it out and it's a great site!!

LeAnne@Hairs My Story Team said...

Hey now, going natural ain't always so easy either. You'll get frustrated with style options during the beginning.
hairsmystory.com

Tomika aka "Meka" said...

Hello. I applaud your decision as I recently made the decision my self. I haven't permed in over 4 months and my hair is so healthy and lovely although I was struggling with the decision to either chop it all off or to try to manage the two textures. After reading ypur blog I am inspired to hang in there and manage while my new growth grows out and I inch buy inch cut off the relaxed portions. I will follow your progress and maybe you can follow mines. Hopefully we can inspire one another or encourage one another as it gets tough. I, unfortunately am already at that point as just this morning I was thinking about making an appointment instead, I will blog about my process and progress and see how it turns out. Peace and love. Tomika