Specifically, it was my brother who, in response to my mom when she mentioned my decision, blurted out that "natural hair doesn't look good."
*cue death stare*
Honestly, I was annoyed; more so at the ignorance of the statement than at the fact that it came from my own brother. However, I had to remind myself that people's opinions and preferences are very different, partly due to their experiences in life. Although natural hair has gained steady momentum in the past years, relaxed hair is still the mainstream in many societies including those here in the Caribbean.
So I really shouldn't be upset with my brother...he, like many of us, was socialized to prefer and desire silky, straight hair. I, myself, wasn't too fond of natural hair before I went on my hair journey. And the poor women walking around with neglected, half-done natural hair certainly doesn't give any support for women who want to wear their natural hair. Of course there are plenty of women who also sport relaxed hair that's far from healthy, but as long as it appears to pursue to Eurocentric ideal, it's okay, right?
My mother has also expressed concern over me going natural, mostly because she remembers how difficult it was to take care of my hair as a child, and she fears that I'm not ready to care for it on my own. I do understand her fears, and this week she had me swayed in the direction of getting a relaxer and cutting off any damaged hair.
Also, today I was with my mom when she got her hair relaxed at the salon. The hairdresser (who used to relax my hair) looked at my hair and commented that it wasn't looking too hot. Ermm...duhh!
I do have 13 weeks of new growth poppin' out of my scalp! Farrr from tactful madame...
Anyway, today my conviction was sealed by both my brother and former hairdresser. How dare anyone tell me that the hair that God gave me doesn't look good? It's not a subject I will get self-righteous about, but it irks me when people look down on me and underestimate my abilities, thinking that the silly little child is not handling herself or her hair well at all.
It's hair. I'm going to be 18 and I am ready to make my own decisions. And at the end of the day, it's hair! I could be strung out on drugs or preggers with 3 baby daddies but all I want is to go natural!
(okay, that was a bit dramatic...)
I'm fed up of the relaxer process and I hate other people doing my hair. The people in my life who don't approve of my decision to go natural will just have to get over it, because God makes no mistakes, and I'm not on this earth to satisfy anyone's aesthetic pleasures.