Friday, December 04, 2009

The journey so far...

It seems like another lifetime ago when I felt the need to look like I did in that photo. I was weave-a-licious (and yes, those are blue contacts I'm sportin). I don't think I ever really questioned whether or not altering my appearance so significantly was the thing to do; I just did it. I knew deep down I wasn't being true to myself, but I didn't care. I made excuses to myself as to why I couldn't just be happy with my unaltered natural hair: it was too thick, too kinky, too nappy, it shrunk up when washed, it never could be pressed completely straight, it was just too difficult...the list of excuses I had as to why I felt my hair wasn't good enough could fill a book.

I never had an addiction to the creamy crack. My hair is far too fine to put up with chemicals (or heat for that matter) for very long. I did however love extensions and weaves! When I read that piece by Joy Bryant in which she proclaims that her weave made her feel more human, I remember thinking about how at one time I could completely relate to those sentiments.

But things changed.

Ever since I cut my hair, and have made a commitment to wearing it sans weave or extensions, I've been able to truly realize the beauty of my kinks and coils. I wouldn't trade them for anything! Not only that, but caring for my hair is actually a whole lot of fun.

I've begun to realize that wearing hair that once grew out of the head of someone else is a rather questionable practice. I had watched some clips from a documentary awhile back about a British pop stars search to the question: Whose hair is it anyway? The hair extensions the stars wear comes from the heads of women and girls who are probably getting paid nothing or very little for their sacrifice. The cheap stuff most normal people buy however...literally comes from the garbage.

That's just depressing.

I am not willing to wear trash on my head. There is something very lowly and pathetic about wearing garbage.

So my journey continues on, and I'm enjoying every step on the way...


Check out my new blog about natural haircare and all things green!

13 comments:

LoveSupremeQueen said...

Great post and nice vid. loved the end where it said "starring me as myself" lol.Im almost a year natural (bc feb '09)and I love it. Never felt so pretty in my life!

BLACKkittenROAR said...

Thanks! Me too, I feel so pretty natural! Its too bad more women don't take the chance and try it out.

Anonymous said...

Very nice. You look happy being natural.

I have always either relaxed or hot comb my hair. Maybe one day I will go natural; however, I never wore a weave or wig piece. If it is not my own hair I do not bother.

ann

Francis L. Holland Blog said...

I agree with you: "There is something lonely and very pathetic about wearing garbage."

To me the photograph of you above (that's you with the bronze earrings, right?) is very beautiful and attractive. I had a girlfriend from Cameroon who wore an Afro similar and I loved it. I think the fact that it was natural is one of the things that first attracted me to her. (And she said she was attracted to me because, when I said I was from the United States, I didn't fit the arrogant image of Americans that she had.)

Thanks for commenting on my post about natural hair and intimacy. I love Afros, but I haven't seen one in person in about six months, where I live in Brazil. Straightening hair is almost universal in the city where I live. Even women and girls with barely noticeable waves straighten their hair as if they want it to look like the hair of Asian women.

I don't understand it. And I've stopped talking with my stepdaughters about it, because it just leads to futile arguments that I can't win because, ultimately, their hair is their own.

Hair certainly doesn't need to be braided or plaited to enjoy a scalp massage. But, realistically, most Black women don't feel they are at liberty or have the desire to wear Afros. It's a shame really, since Afros require the least upkeep of all possible hairstyles, and I find them very beautiful and compelling.

They're often a sign of Black self-determination and personal power. My mother started wearing an Afro in 1970 and did not go back before she passed in 1997. She trimmed Afro her hair herself, with an electric clipper. She also abandoned high heels and frilly dresses and began making all of her dashikis based on a comfortable style she found in Africa.

Francis L. Holland Blog said...

Thanks again for posting the US Human Genome Project Easy-Widget! I think as we learn who we really are (and are not) biologically, it's going to make a big difference in people's color-associated ideation, emotion and behavior.

It's just like teaching a boy that he's the boss in a relationship and women have to obey him, whatever it takes, will almost inevitably lead to chauvinism and violence in the future.

Likewise teaching white and Black people we are distinct subspecies, with some species more equal than others, encourages us to compare ourselves and compete instead of unite and collaborate. We have different skin colors, but we're all from the same species and we have no reliable biological differences. Even two Black and white parents can have children of two distinctly different skin colors, but only people who are terribly misinformed believe that children from the same parents can be of different subspecies ("races"). They are simply of different skin colors.

BLACKkittenROAR said...

Francis,
Thank you, yes that is me in the photo. I think it will probably take awhile for people to let go of the notion of biological race. Both Black and white (and everyone in between) people cling to it because we've been conditioned to believe in a falsehood for so long.
White racists can't accept it for obvious reasons, but many Black people have a hard time with it as well because they think that by claiming race is simply a social construct, will mean that real issues of discrimination and oppression will be dismissed. I actually sent someone to your blog the other day who was unsure about the validity of such a claim, and she was quite pleased with what she read there.
Unfortunately, there are those who like to take the argument and stand it on its head. I actually had someone reply to a comment I left that since humans and apes have 99% the same DNA, that apes must too be the same as humans. I believe the point they were trying to make was that science proves nothing. Its ridiculous how people can take data and twist it into whatever they see fit to prove a point.

ChocolateOrchid said...

Great vid! I enjoyed reading this post. I left a comment on it on your other blog.

Btw, you've been tagged.
Wish you the best,
CO

BLACKkittenROAR said...

lol! I've been tagged, does that mean I'm it?

Francis L. Holland Blog said...

I really doubt that the DNA of humans and apes is 99% similar. I think the person who said that was just trying to insult you (and us), frankly.

I wonder if anyone has studied the ape genome sufficiently to make such a claim. I'm not aware that anyone has. Although I wouldn't be surprised to discover that enough research has been done to conclusively disprove the comment you read.

Like you said, some people are wedded to the disproved "race" hypothesis and will say anything to defend it. I like to ask people to for links to the sources of their information, to see whether they are merely expressing their own unlearned opinions and biases. That's why I'm so happy that you have posted the widget that leads to the Human Genome Project page that states that the hypothesis of "race" has been conclusively disproved.

BLACKkittenROAR said...

@Francis
actually, I was also taught that we humans share 98% similar DNA before. A Google search turns up stats from 96% to 99%. I was also taught that apparently, we also share about 50% of the same DNA as bananas.

Anyway, you should read this article explaining in great detail why making the claim we are 98% ape is true, yet should not be taken too seriously because it leaves much out of the equation:

http://personal.uncc.edu/jmarks/interests/aaa/marksaaa99.htm

Apes actually have more DNA than we do, in fact I once read somewhere that apes are far more evolved than we are...which makes sense if you think about it.

BLACKkittenROAR said...

Did apes descend from us?
http://www.thestar.com/sciencetech/article/703747

This article is really rather amazing too...if this stuff was common knowledge, certain ignorant folk would be claiming that they themselves were apes instead of using using said claim as an epithet

Blank.Bare.Clean said...

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! Thanks for sharing your journey. Also, your blog is such a great celebration of natural womanhood. Love it!

BLACKkittenROAR said...

Ah, thanks hun!

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