African hair is one of those features that easily distinguishes us of the”Black” race.Its characteristic kinkiness, length and texture distinctively varies from one person to another,nevertheless its always easy to spot.
I have been keeping dreadlocks for two years now.(Yes my babies turned two this october,i think i deseve a pat on the back:-))I too cant believe how fast its been started out when my hair was just but an inch so i can proudly say that i’ve matured them babylocks from what they were then to what they are now.Hair is one of those things a girl is in constant endless battle to have it look good and smartly kept because its one of those features we all know guys will look at and make their own impressions about us based on it.I for one have never been the kind to be patient with hair.I always figured its hair i mean cut it it grows right back.Mine’s the full african hair all the way.kinky as hell and almost quite the steel wool type…..well not literally.Y’all know how hard it is maintaining this kinda hair au naturel.
So in high school i had relaxed my hair.We Africans have been enslaved into that mindset that our hair must look like a mzungus.So we will buy those chemicals that the whiteman has concoted for us to make our hair look like theirs.Relaxing my hair made it quite
not easier to maintain ,well, that is the first few weeks after i had visited the salon.You see in my school once you got in,luxuries such as a visit to the salon were unheard of.You had to wait until you went home for halfterm hence le struggle throughout the term especially when growth set in.Now y’all ladies know that growth is the mother of all troubles for Relaxed hair.It turns your hair into a constant painful playground each time you comb.And that was the stoy of my life all through highschool.
Fastforward to after highschol and i was ready to experiment with all the crazy hairstyles.So i went on from box braids to Ghanaian lines to Abuja braids and the likes.Dont you ever sit down and wonder why we Kenyan girls never put on hair that has a Kenyan name to it.We will always put on anything that sounds foreign.I havent heard of Nairobi braids..or Kisumu lines,you know.Girls always doning Brazilian weaves,Indian Sangita braids,Peruvian hair and a lot more others.So anyway,i tried so many hairdos on my head and every other time i thought about visits to the salon( which entailed undoing,washing,treating and then again sitting for a whole day while my plaiting mama worked on my head)all i could think of was getting a permanent hairdo one that would not have me undego all that process.
And that was when i decided that i woas going to lock my hair.I always used to see ladies in nice locks looking all chic and fabulous and i figured why not.I remember the day i locked my hair how super excited i was and how i couldnt wait for them locks to start droping over my shoulders.I went to bed thinking i’d wake up following day to find them looking like Dakore Egbuson’s(just google her im sure half of anyone that reads this doesnt know her).i soon realized that that was just but a dream and a very long shot at that because turns out they actually required so much patience, care and time to let my hair lock
.And it finally did after a few months and i graduated from babylocks to them dreadlocks.Now dreadlocks are associated with rastafarianism and many are times i have heard people address me as “Mras” which is slang for a rastafari.it used to irk me before but with time i have learnt to let it pass and smile and just allow them to continue wallowing in their ignorance.At times people will come and ask me ,
“Oh my God,are these dreads?They are so preeeety!”
And i’ll smile and just allow them to touch my hair as they wow in amazement.Of course i will not let them see tthat tinge of pride on my face as they tell me this 🙂.Then there are those who will have certain opinions about me just because i have dreadlocked hair.They will ask me why i have dreadlocked hair and im in the school of law.and i’ll wonder just where exactly its written that lawyers are forbidden to have deadlocks.Nonetheless i will let them have those opinions because i know that my hair does not make me who i am neither does it make me any less a person than the next person.If i chose to believe that i’d be bald by now……Just kidding.Hair does not define who you are and yeah i know you’re probably thinking how cliche it sounds but then again dont we all use cliche as a term for all those truths we dont wanna hear about?
My name’s Brenda.And i am not my hair.
Are You yours?