Well, what in the hell am I doing!!??! I dont know how many times I pondered cutting my dreads, coloring my dreads; just doing something different with them, and then it hit me. Not it, but God. To better understand my position today you have to understand where all this came from. So heres my story...
1997-2006 I was perm and color queen. Oh yes I was!! I had to seriously take care of my image, because of who I was. During these years I was an Active Duty Marine, a college student, mom, wife, divorcee, girlfriend, and fiance, (of course not all at the same time.lol) and had to live up to the standards of those around me, right ladies. This guy likes long hair, this close girlfriend thinks you should do something different, and lets not forget our boss, who has just too much to say about the whole hair issue anyway. Life wasnt easy trying to please EVERYBODY and my body started to react to the stress. Weight gain, hair loss, skin pigment changes and did I mention hair loss!! The one thing I have been trying to improve was the one thing that I was losing the most of. I wish my fat would have followed suit. Nevertheless, the stress of being a good Marine and every other title I had was tearing me up and I had no idea of where to go.
So, one day I prayed. Yes family, I prayed and asked God what He though. The problem was I was spending so much time and money on what I looked like, that physical time in church was non-existent and praying at home took away from my coloring regime. Ohh thats right you all have no idea what I look like. Ok lets move off topic and tackle my appearance during my first talk with God.
At this time I was 5ft 8inch (this fluctuated depending on how much weight I wanted to lose), about 190 lbs, thick not chuncky (u know Moto Moto), light skinned with shoulder length hair that was dye Sun-kiss brown. My hair is comprised of the Deoxyribonucleic acid of the African in America, Irish In America and Native dwellers of America (Cherokee and Crow to be exact) genetics and my hair shows it; losely coiled and soft. I got this Rogue thing going too. I know of only one aunt that has it as well; a strong gray streak that is positioned at the top right corner of my head. Its cute today, back then, it was a nightmare!!!
Ok back to my chat with God. So He was a lil mad at the fact that I had not paid tithes in years, let alone attend a church regularly. There were churches I sat in and attended, but I was not using my talents and skills to benefit HIS Kingdom. You may ask me, Sharita how do you know HE was mad? Ok family you know that feeling in your tummy that says, "You better not!!", or "Come on now!" or even worst "Didnt you learn from the last time you spent tithes on getting dye and relaxers for your hair and you couldnt figure out why you didnt have enough money to pay your electricity bill?". Oh yeah fam, it was that real for me. At the counter of a beauty supply store, buying dye and a relaxer with my last; in line with all that in my head. It tore me up! So praying to God re-revealed an ugly truth. I wasnt worried about my salvation as long as I was fine as fine can be, which turned out to be broke and miserable. So where am I going with this?? I asked God to simple change me. I couldnt go to the corner store without checking every follicle of hair, makeup right, heels on point and a purse to match.; and if I didnt have those things at hand, the idea festered in my soul, like a ravaged beast slavering, biding a long awaited feast. My life evolved around my outwardly appearance and not the reflection of my soul. What do you do when a big, and I mean BIG, change is needed and you know it deep down in the crevice of your existance something has to give?... you simply change; and change I did. I woke up on Saturday morning in the Fall of 2006 thinking about how God had blessed me and my family during and after Hurricane Katrina and how, at the time, my family was healthy and doing well. I was too blessed to not live a reflected God given life. As I walked in the bathroom that Saturday morning, scissors in hand and dying to self eagerly awaiting its arrival, I started thinking about what the downfall would be of such a drastic and unexplainable change. Most people who knew me during this time wouldnt call me self-centered or egotistic, but Family I was. I was beautiful and knew it more than my ABC's!! However, I was walking into my new life as a woman who would stop looking to others for approval, but one who would start looking to God for HIS!! The scissors seemed to be a little heavier as they lay cold and clammy in my hand. I didnt account for the lighting in the bathroom to be so low. It had never been low before and my goodness the kids were so loud. "Sharita, are u serious??" was what my recently chemically overprocessed hair started to scream at me. The blades of the scissors seemed to smile as they anticipated thier role in what God was about to do im my life. So, I cut!! I cut some more, and I cut again. Did I forget to mention that I had no prior training, professional or ghetto, in hair cutting? My skills just felt right, whatever, let me stop lying, it was a hot ghetto mess. PLEASE LAUGH OUT LOUD!!! It was a mess, yet in some way I felt vindicated. I no longer had to sucomb to the weekly ritual of Black Hair. My goodness I was free from the inner guilty of not being able to look my best, when all along I was as beautiful and radiant as ever. I was free, just wish the barber I visited later that evening was too. First cut was a low fad for about $15 bucks. Whew it was short. Nonetheless, it was done and my life was just starting.
The Big Chop.
I didnt understand Nappyisms at this point and had didnt know there were folks like me all over the world. I was unaware that my baptism into the Natural World required this act and my inner comfort came in knowing that we all were striving for a deeping love of self and many, a deeper and more passionate love of our Creator. Not many people get it when i say, "My natural state is spritual." Most times I get "Oh ok well short hair fits your face!!" and the hair conversation is over, but going natural is and continues to be a spiritual journey. With this new short crop, I heard the most evil and ugly comments anyone can think of. "She would be pretty if she'd just get a perm.", "My God whats wrong with women like that, natural is ugly.", "We aint slaves no more!!" , and my all time favorite "No man will every want a nappy headed chick!" So thats what I heard, starting the day after the Big Chop. Words that cut deep at my already vulnerable soul. Hearing those comments forced me to look within at my emptiness and ask God to give me peace and to Restore the Joy of my salvation, cause peace and joy wasnt coming from anywhere else. If you ask God to do something He will and He did. The more I was made fun of the more God began to show me how beautiful and precious I was to HIM. I had noone else reminding me of my inner beauty that recently gave purchased food to the panhandler on the corner, or being the woman who would sacrific her own to help others. I was reminded of how a simple smile really does brighten up someones day, cause sometimes thats all I needed and with gladness I smiled and became walking Joy. God became my bestfriend and serving HIM was the only thing I wanted to do and all I did. I danced, signed, and sang praises to HIS name and HE continued to bless me. In the most ugliest time of my life, by peoples standards, I was hired at a job that I continue to love with all my heart, I was able to grow and understand, better yet, have compassion for people with low selfesteem and made it a point to remind someone of how beautiful they were. I feel in love with Sharita, inside and out, afro and all. I was beautiful!!! Over a two year span I had grown to respect what GOD had given me and began to love myself unconditionally... and then it hit me (thats how I started this blog)....Love is deeper than the soul...love is God, so true love and only come from HIM. To reach a deeper level in myself I had to dig deeper. Dreadlocks!!
May 15, 2007 I got locked up. So im thinking how cool dreadlocks. I have enough selfesteem to handle the locking process. Well family, I didnt and I almost washed them straight out. I had no idea people were still rude, lol but that too did pass and my locks became a sign of ultimate beauty. I was constantly being reminded of how georgous my hair was. My favorite comment "I would do that too, but i need my perm!".
So where am I going with this,, Really?
Today its time for a change again. Welcome to my blog experience about combing out dreadlocks and what I am going through on this journey. Why am I doing it? Well, why have I done anything, Gods guidance!! This journey is all about patience and endurance. He is constantly teaching how to forgive and give people time to get right within themselves.
With this blog I want to share with you my experiences and what God reveals to me as I tediously comb out each and every lock in its entirety. I will not use scissors during this process. Just conditioners, combs, a cd from IBOC (Inspriring Body of Christ) and FWBC (Friendship West Baptist Church), patience, love, joy and a little help from a patient friend. I hope you enjoy this ride with me and please comment on how you feel, inspired or not, or just enjoy the daily reads and keep me in your prayers. I welcome negativity too. Writing is a vice that empties the soul of cruel, negative, vibes. You can give them to me cause I just give them to God!! Its all good!!
Here we go......