A few years ago, in an act known as the Big Chop, I cut all the chemicals out of my hair. I went cold turkey and made a clean break from the chemicals and pressing combs used to straighten my hair and force it to comply to a standard for which it has not been created. It was a big move, and it left me with just a fuzz of hair and a feeling that my head was on display in a world that might not treat it so kindly.
Over time, my hair began to grow back. It has taken its time, and I had to learn how to care for my natural hair as it grew in. For decades, I had subjected my hair to hair-straightening rituals that made my tight coils lay flat to my scalp and blow in the breeze. But that is not the way my hair was created by God to behave. My hair grows in tight coils that shrink when wet, but can also be twisted and cornrowed and picked out into a gigantic afro. I was missing all of this when I kept trying to make my hair be something it isn’t. I now know something I wish I’d been able to see, many years before: What God did when He chose my hair for me, is really quite stunning.
(I’ve got more to say about this, over here. I hope you’ll join me.)