Tribulations of African hair (1)

The diary of my African hair

Part one


One of the biggest blessings/curses of being African is the African hair. On a good day, I can do anything with my kinky twisted African hair.  On a bad day, well…I’ll not go there.
A few weeks ago, I undertook what has so far turned into the craziest hair  experiment I have ever had. Here is what has so far happened…

 

Day  1:

I look in the mirror for the first time and I am shocked at the stranger staring back at me. In my wildest dreams I wouldn’t have thought that that stranger was related to me, let alone that it was my own reflection. I make a mental note to undo all of it before someone sees me and thinks I have lost it. But I am so tired. I decide to rest and undo it later.

An hour later:

My eight year old daughter sees me and screams in delight.
“Mummy that is so cool!” she says staring at me and touching my hair. I stare at her suspiciously wondering whether she is being sarcastic. She has only recently discovered the power of sarcasm.
“Are you sure?” I ask her over and over again.
“Yes” she swears doing the sign of the cross like I taught her(If you lie and do the sign of the cross, something bad will happen to you!) Always works like a charm. She still kind of believes that I know everything!


About two hours later:
Her dad comes home.  I listen as they chat about school. I don’t come out of the bathroom. I am torn between believing my daughter and undoing my new hair.

Moments later:
I finally come out of the room. He stares at me for a second without saying anything. In that second, I am ready to grab a pair of scissors and cut off my hair. And then he bursts out laughing.
“That is so cool!” he says getting up to examine it.
“Are you sure?” I ask. “What does ‘cool’ mean?” I continue anxiously remembering that my daughter had also used the word ‘cool’. He pauses for a moment.
“It looks nice” he says simply. He has a cheeky smile that I can’t quite interpret.

The rest of the evening:

I avoid looking at myself in the mirror. A small part of me believes those two or desperately wants to.

3 am:

My three year old son calls out from his bed. He wants milk.  I take him his bottle. He sits up. “What is that?” he asks pointing at my hair. He looks terrified.
“My new hair” I explain a bit taken aback at the terror in his eyes.
“I hate your orange hair” he says.
“They are not orange” I protest, but he is already closing his eyes…

 

(Part two, coming soon!)

Write a comment

Comments: 7
  • #1

    Genderactivist (Wednesday, 19 June 2013 21:52)

    The personal relationship that black women have with their hair is something that one would not understand unless they had an afro of kinky curls that are unmanageable...That said we have to love the way black women wear their hair differently. Be it dreadlocks, weaves, kinky twists...the list is endless. Your experience reminds me of the comments Gabby Douglas (Olympic 2012 gold medalist in gymnastics) got about her hair. Instead of celebrating her win...comments were awash about her kinky hair...like seriously!

  • #2

    noelle (Wednesday, 19 June 2013 22:35)

    well, you have support, so believe them! I want to see it :-)

  • #3

    Stella Opondo (Wednesday, 19 June 2013 22:35)

    Hehehe...I cant wait for part two...photo, photo, please....

  • #4

    Martin (Thursday, 20 June 2013 10:57)

    Ok we need to see what you have done to your hair/head, sarcasm? Yes that's what I will call it your daughter was pulling your leg, I have one and they do not like to disappoint their mothers. I hope part two will tell us how your son screamed later as for your hubby give up, men cannot tell the difference especially for a specie that can have the same hairdo for 30 years

  • #5

    Caroline (Thursday, 20 June 2013 13:59)

    Genderactivist,Noelle, Stella, Martin, Thanks for stopping by! It only gets crazier from here :-)

  • #6

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  • #7

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