Most women are taught that their hair is their "crowning glory" at a young age. We're fed the idea that long hair is what we should aspire to have, that looser curl patterns are the most beautiful, and that we should consult with someone –– whether a significant other or parental figure -- before we make any major changes to our tresses.
I'm calling BS.
Why should I have to talk to anyone about what I want to do with the hair that grows from my scalp? Why is my tightly-coiled hair seen as less desirable?
Hair is such a fickle thing. It can break off, tangle, grow longer, fall out, change colors...it's not always consistent. Why do we put so much emphasis on something that is just going to do what it wants to do when it's all said and done? Taking care of your hair is extremely important, and I believe that healthy hair should always be the ultimate goal, but hair should not be the be-all and end-all for you.
My hair journey is not uncommon, in my opinion. I have very thick, kinky hair, so I spent a lot of time in middle and high school getting my hair straightened every two weeks. And at the time, I loved it. I had twisties, connects, bangs, a signature side bang, bobs, bouncy wraps -- you name it. When I got to college, I started experimenting with natural styles, and the next thing I knew, twist outs and natural hair tutorials became my life. It seemed like my hair never overcame the heat damage, though.
Fast-forward to 2015, and I had a short cut (which I wore both straight and natural) which was a lot of fun. But I noticed that people kept coming up to me and saying that they "could not believe" that I cut my hair. I ended up letting it grow out again, and resumed doing twist-outs. But last year, I was so fed up with being confined to the house on wash days, having to twist my hair up two/three times a week because my curls wouldn't last, having to put rollers in my hair because my ends wouldn't curl right and then struggling to sleep comfortably because of them, and then trying to hold back tears in the morning because I spent hours doing my hair just for it to not come out right. My hair had become the boss of me.
Thus, the gradual cutting process began. I got a tapered cut around the time of my birthday last year. It was cute, but still took me a lot of time to twist up the top of my hair. I ended up getting another haircut (still tapered) and when I tell you I hated it? Y'all. I don't even have pictures of it! Lol. I ended up big chopping about a week later, and when I looked in the mirror, I was in awe of myself. I would always say I was going to big chop, but would chicken out and end up getting a cut that wasn't as drastic. I maintained that length for a few months, but in the back of my mind, I kept saying, "I could cut it some more."
So on Friday, January 12, I met my boyfriend at the barbershop after work and I got my hair cut the lowest it's ever been in my life. I had more hair when I came out of the womb than I do now! Haha. I will admit, I was a tiny bit nervous before getting in the chair, but once I heard the clippers start buzzing, I calmed down because I realized there was no turning back. When I finally got to see my new 'do, I felt so exposed, but in the most beautiful way.
This is honestly the most beautiful, confident and sure of myself I have ever felt. I feel like I can conquer the world! I truly feel lighter, like a weight has been lifted. I wish I would've done this sooner.
For so long I had associated my beauty with how good my hair looked that day, and I am so happy that I am finally realizing that my beauty radiates from the inside out, and not the other way around. I love my little "bald" head, and I'm pretty sure this is going to be my hairstyle for a long time.
And for anyone that is considering doing the big chop, I say go for it! It's such a liberating feeling, and it sounds cliché, but I do think it gives you the opportunity to challenge yourself about what makes you feel beautiful outside of your physical attributes.
If any of you have big chopped, I love to know how it made you feel! Please leave a comment down below. =)