Since starting my loc journey, the number of days where I worry about what others think of me, when they see my locs, are few and far between. I walked into this journey confident of myself, who I am, and the authenticity of my hair.
I am sure there have been moments where an individual has had a less than favorable opinion of my loc'd tresses but there is truth in what you truly believe and feel about yourself. When you believe your hair is beautiful, you see your hair as beautiful.
I was born with hair, that when left alone, naturally coils around itself, until loc'd tresses cascade down my back. I believe that anything that happens naturally, is untouched, or unaltered is pure and true. Therefore, someone not appreciating what is pure and true about me or my physical appearance, is not someone whose opinion has no power over me.
My locs and my journey continue to teach and remind me of how I should live my life. My mind, my spirit, and my soul is natural, unaltered, and pure. As I continue to live my life, I will walk in confidence that what God has created of me and within me is true and I will live my life accordingly.
February 11, 2017 was when I hit five months in my loc journey and that was the roughest month, hands down.
There is a phase that I often hear when people of are in the early stages of their loc journey and it's called the "Ugly Phase". It's a phase where your hair is going through a lot of changes and anyone who doesn't know what you're doing will think you have just given up on life. The reality is this phase is the most transformative phase in your loc journey. Your locs are budding, growing, frizzing, forming all at the same time.
I knew the phase was coming and being the optimistic person I am and I envisioned myself breezing through this phase unbothered. It didn't happen that way. I tell people now, that it was during this phase, that I avoided the mirror and my only thoughts were, "Push through".
Not only was this a transformative period for my locs but for myself personally. Before starting my locs, I was going through my own personal challenges. I am not sure how everyone else works through their obstacles in life but my process usually goes like this:
Phase 1 - The challenge/obstacle hits me
Phase 2 - I'm very introspective, analyzing what has happened
Phase 3 - The emotions I have held off, began to surface
Phase 4 - My emotions take over, I feel sadness, anger, hurt, guilt, regret, etc
Phase 5 - I find calm within the eye of the storm
Phase 6 - While still feeling emotions, I decide to learn from the lesson and push through
Phase 7 - I start to distance myself from the challenge with one step at a time
Month five with my locs, the ugly phase, was also phase six in my own personal life, I was pushing through. In month six, I made a loc update video and when I go back to watch the video, I realize that my update wasn't about my locs but instead where I was personally, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
Just remember that after Winter, must come Spring.
Let me start this with saying that loc'ing my hair did not come from some dramatic life changing event. It was more of an indirect consequence. Five months before deciding that I would leave behind the two strand twists, afro puffs, twist outs, and all other loose natural styles, I had an experience that challenged my spirit, mind, body, and soul. From April 2016 until September 2016, my only focus was
During this time, styling my hair was the last thing on my mind. Every two weeks I would wash my hair, condition it, blow it out, part my hair down the middle and braid it into two cornrows,
That spring turned into summer and as the end of summer approached, I begin to feel a little lighter and a little wiser. One day, while finishing up my second braid, it occurred to me that I had not styled my hair in months and there was no desire to style it in the immediate future. Unfortunately, I also noticed that my edges were thinning out from the constant tension of the cornrows. Now that I was moving into a better place, a healthier place, I wanted the same for my hair.
Prior to loc'ing my hair, I would often wear it in two strand twist and I thought to myself, "What if I two strand twisted my hair, one last time, and allow the twists to develop and form into locs?" Labor day weekend, I actually twisted my hair with the intent of letting those twists be the start of my loc journey but there is something special about locs and it is important that you start your journey with the right set. The following weekend, I re-twisted my hair, making them slightly larger; purposely defining my parts; and loving each strand of hair. By nightfall, on September 11, 2016, my loc journey began.
The desire to have locs has always been present within. Many years before my journey began, my brother loc'd his hair and I would enviously look at the knotted strands that fell down his back. There were times where the fear of loc'ing my hair would enter my mind and I would start to question myself. What would my hair look like loc'd? Would loc'ing my hair, interfere with me advancing in my career? Would my hair actually loc? How different would maintaining my locs be from other hair styles?
On this day, the fears, the questions were gone. I was on a path of evolving, vibrating at a higher frequency, and this included my hair. I was ready to embark on this journey so I picked up a camera and begin to record...