“All the compliments I received and jealous glares from short haired women didn’t make me want to keep being “that girl.” My hair was broken, damaged from relaxing and bleaching. But what else could I do?”
By Natalie Sanders, Contributing Writer
I’m that girl. The girl that always had “good hair.” I had to have my relaxer every two months to the date! I just loved when I could flip my straight mane and be compared with the white girls…my hair was just like theirs, I would tell myself.
But secretly, all the compliments I received and jealous glares from short haired women didn’t make me want to keep being “that girl.” My hair was broken, damaged from relaxing and bleaching. But what else could I do? I HAD to have that relaxer to keep that “nappy head” girl away my friends used to tease me about in grade school.
I had no resolution until one day after work. I listen to the radio on the way home in my car. The radio personality, on the station I listen to has a show called “All Natural Thursdays”. On that particular Thursday, the conversation revolved around natural hair and how much better it is. A lady named Stephanie Suthers came on the show. She said she was in her early 50s and her natural hair was down to her waist!! I could not believe it. She said, she wanted to prove that black women can grow their hair long and natural without locking it up.
I intensely listened for the rest of the show. She talked about how she has her own line of all natural hair products that will help hair grow from its damaged state. That’s all I had to hear. I jotted down the website address quickly so I would not forget. My intentions were to use her products just to help my RELAXED her grow, and then stop using them…never to go natural. I couldn’t stand for my hair to be greasy or oily…and her products did both.
When I did decide to let everyone know was going natural, I got all negative responses! They said oh, that’s a big step, why would you want to do that, your hair is so nice when its straight, etc. I have to admit, I wasn’t doing it for myself, I was doing it for them…to show them I still could have that “good hair”, long hair.
As I began transitioning, I started to love the texture and feel of my hair. No longer does it bother me to have oil in my hair, because I know now that’s what my hair loves and needs. A year later, and 6 inches shorter, I am LOVING my natural hair more than I could have known, and I am a forever lye-free chick. So yeah, I’m “that girl” 😉
Any former “good hair” girls out there? Can you relate?