The Misbehaving Strand

The Misbehaving Strand

The strands are unyielding…lonely vagabonds refusing to comply, always misbehaving. Why would anyone want these strands?

My hair was never the cooperative type. The strands are thin, but numerous. They don’t straighten out, choosing rather to curl in on themselves in tightly wound defiance. I’ve tried all my life to get them to behave, and still, no compliance. Why would anyone want these strands?

I started my first head of dreadlocks in 2005, and for 9 years, I regrew a head of dreadlocks three times – none of them complied – not like ‘good’ hair, that would matte then stay put when asked. No, my dreadlocks matted and yet , still strayed out of itself. Wild, thin, curly hair – a tangle of thickness.

So, you could imagine my surprise everytime someone says, “..but, you have ‘good’ hair!” I am as shocked as they are, because my hair does not behave. Does yours? I don’t understand this differentiation between good and bad hair though, because my good hair does bad things. I’ve tried many things to tame this ‘good’ hair, and like a wild horse, it just gets away from me.

I’m only now growing to understand my hair though. As a child, who only spent a few years with either of my parents, I don’t remember wondering about my hair and theirs  – it just never occurred to me until now that I’m older and people ask me about my hair. Of the few times, my mother did comb my hair, I ended up with two very loose and uncoordinated ponytails. I’m sure she knew then what I have only now come to realize over the years – my hair is ‘bad’ hair – it does not go quietly into the night. It rebels and breaks out of every noose it is put into.

In 2014, I cut my dreadlocks and decided not to grow another one. Since then, I’ve learnt a lot about my hair, and the more I learn about my hair, the more I understand it’s beauty and indifference. It’s the first time, I’ve really managed my own hair, whilst it was un-matted or untreated in any way, because before I grew dreadlocks, I just let it grow and played in it, twisting it in my fingers or cutting it low. I’ve never really tried to, you now, ‘comb it’…as I said, it’s ‘bad’ hair.

I wish we could all love our hair, as I love my ‘bad’ hair…Learn to love your hair, whether it’s ‘good’ or ‘bad’, because I don’t think you’d want my ‘good’ ‘bad’ hair. It doesn’t behave.

 

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