Hair is a big deal.
To me personally, not so much. I am a pretty low maintenance gal, although I am sporting a pretty cute style right now thanks so much to the very talented Hannah Carpenter! A barista at Starbucks told me that I look funky, without trying too hard. Quite the compliment I thought!
Hair in the African-American world is a huge deal. That your daughter's hair is well-groomed and well-styled signifies your care for her. If you would like to be better educated in the world of African hair care and the battle between natural hair and chemically processed hair, watch the hilarious documentary called Good Hair with Chris Rock. I got quite the education watching that one!
I think since the first day I met Therese, six months ago, and everyday since, she has made it clear that she wants to grow her hair and get it braided. Keep in mind that her hair was shaved almost to the scalp when we met. It needed to be at least a few inches long so that she could get her extensions put in. Everyday, multiple times a day, for the last 8-12 weeks, I have had to ooh and ahh over just how long her hair was getting. I actually think commenting on the length of Therese's hair is her love language!
In seeking out ways that I can become closer to my daughter and enhance our attachment, I realize that if hair is a big deal to my daughter, it better be a big deal to me.
I have gone to the the ends of the earth to make my daughter's good hair dreams come true. There is nothing this mama won't do- and that includes going outside my comfort zone and into a downtown park to get an estimate on my daughter's hair. Oh yeah. I had to meet a hairstylist in a park! I met the woman's cousin at a park who recommended her to me and then I had to meet the stylist herself at another park to get the estimate. That is me, breaking down cultural barriers, people.
Well, last Friday, Therese's dream came true!
That is one happy girl!
She sat still for 3.5 hours getting her hair done without one complaint or tear (and it hurts!).
As her mother, I am trying to help her walk the fine line of enjoying her beauty and knowing where true beauty comes from. She was loved no less in her "before" state. On the other hand, when you look good, your true beauty can shine through a little more clearly.
I may be paraphrasing a bit here, but I think Spiderman said it best: "With great beauty comes great responsibility!".