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Blown Away

If you have been a reader of this blog for any amount of time or follow me on my social media, you know that I have natural hair.  I love my coily hair.  It can be hard to manage, but we're getting there.  I've been natural officially for five years now, but I didn't do the big chop until four and a half years ago.  Hard to believe since my hair is back to its previous length and longer.  But that length is exactly what brings us here today.  

This time last week, I was so excited because I knew I was getting my hair done.  For me now, getting my hair done means that I'm getting it blown out, getting is slicked down with a flatiron, and hoping I read the weather report correct because I want it to last longer than a couple of days.  Well, this blowout was anything but ordinary - not because of the inch of hair she cut off (getting a trim is part of hair growth and health), but because of the madness my hair was cause in my office for ONE person.  

Monday rolls around and even though it's not going to rain, I know it's going to be humid because I live in the south.  No matter how hot my flat iron is that morning, by lunch time, my hair will probably be all over the place.  But Monday morning, I went to work looking amazing!  I got so many compliments and people were intrigued by my hair because they are used to seeing it styled in its natural state.  It was all good...and then I got that backwards compliment that could have resulted in my pink slip.  

The compliment started off as a compliment, but I still had to explain my hair.  She said, "Oh, your hair has grown".  Ok, we all know that shrinkage is real.  Don't let these coils fool you.  So, I had to explain to her that what she saw on my head Friday and what she saw on my head Monday was the same thing, just straightened.  I thought I had gotten through to her and it was done.  Then came the madness of your hair looks better like that.  

Remember that inch of hair they cut off my ends?  Well, that's actually the amount of hair probably on her head.  She has made it clear she doesn't like hair and doesn't like taking the time to do it.  She has mentioned something to my white co-worker as well (yes, I had to mention race because I didn't want you to think she was only going after me).  

Let me tell you how my straight hair week went.  
Monday, I got up early to flat iron it.  Tuesday, I got up early and put a crimp iron in it.  Wednesday, it was still crimped, but I sort of let it do what it wanted to do.  Thursday, I style the crimps, but it rained that evening and well, you know how that goes.  Friday, I wrapped it up (wished I had taken a photo) and only exposed the ends that I had so gently sprayed down with water that morning.  

Got that part out the way because that is important!  If you truly know me, you know that I wash my hair at least twice a week.  If I have gel in it to control these edges and sideburns, it can be more than that - depending on the style. So, Wednesday, she comes over to my desk and asks me about my hair because I was playing in it and making sure it was where it needed to be.  She wanted to know when I was going to curl it again.  I explained to her that my hair was naturally curly (don't know if she would have understood coily) and all I needed to do was get in the shower and wash it.  Ok, take a seat because I need for you to be ready for her reply.  

Take a shower without washing your hair.

...says the person that washes their hair each day to the person who washes their hair at least twice a week.  They had to put product in my hair to keep my edges down and you know what happened, it started to flake.  Shayla was NOT feeling that and was ready to see her coils again, but because I told my love I would wear it out for the work week, that is what I did.  

Thursday comes and when I tell you it rained, it rained!  It rained so much that it took me an hour to get home, but that is because I had to turn around because the road was flooded and because I had to sit in a parking lot because I couldn't see the hood of Charlotte (my car).  She asked me how I was getting to my car and I told her I had an umbrella.  I also told her that had that day been Friday, I would walk out to my car with nothing covering my hair because I was ready for my curls to come back.  Yes, I'm very blunt in my office.  

You can imagine her face when I walked in my office on Friday.  I came up with the idea on what to do to my hair Thursday night because I knew that after that horrid rain storm, it was going to be hella humid Friday.  On top of that, the wind picked up...again!  To keep my hair in one place, I wrapped it up!  Nothing wrong with that!  

I write about this madness to shed light on the madness we African-Americans have to put up with in the office all because someone doesn't understand our hair.  Don't get me wrong, I know this has to happen in other cultures too, but I can only write about what I know.  I shouldn't have to explain to you why I want to have extensions to protect my hair or why I want to add color to my extensions or why I prefer my coily hair over my straight hair.  If you are asking me because you actually want to know that's one thing, but asking to make me feel bad about my choices is enough to get your feelings hurt...had we been in a different setting.  

Here's my challenge to you - get to know that person in the cube next to you a little better.  Ask them about their family.  Ask them about their hobbies.  Ask them if they can give you vacation ideas.  Break the ice before just diving into the deep end and asking them about their hair.  Find out what makes them who they are because I can assure you, their hair isn't it.  

And just in case you were wondering, my boss wants to know when I'm getting my locs back because that has been his favorite style I've worn.  😀😀😀

So, since I can only write this from one perspective, in the comments share your hair stories - colors, styles, etc.  I know I cannot be the only person that has experienced this! 


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