One Year Natural.

I chopped my hair into a pixie cut January 22nd 2013, before meeting a friend for dinner.* I was fed up. In some areas I cut up to 5 inches of an already short bob off, soothing the fear with pictures of Solange and Tracee Ellis Ross. I had begun nursing a blind faith in a future where my hair would be shiny and long again. One year of solid dedication I pledged, and if I hated it, I could return to the land of heat.

I have no pictures. I didn’t think I’d want them. The Disneyland photo above is from February.

It’s been a battle and then a joy, saying goodbye to a flat iron I’d clutched for 10 solid years. I used heat only once at the sixth month mark to check length and I washed it out immediately, missing the volume of curls.

I have learned how versatile my hair can be. I’ve learned how to get loose waves, tight corkscrews, and massive volume without heat. I’ve learned how five inches of growth looks like two because shrinkage is a Bitch with a capital ‘B’. I’ve learned how to eat a slice of humble pie regularly, but keep going (like the ocean, the hair will pummel you just to remind you who is boss). I’ve learned the power of the afro: she is mighty. Most importantly, I’ve learned how good being me can feel.

What I chopped doubled, then tripled. But I gained a lot more than that. Moisturizing products for one.

One year solid and I never want to go back.

*For the record, I do not recommend chopping off all your hair in the 30 minutes between work and dinner plans. That’s just playing with fire.