I've taken that leap by deciding to Loc my hair. For years people have suggested I loc my hair, but I never wanted to do it because someone told me I should.
Set the scene I'm 11 years old and my hair is breaking brushes. My aunt is frustrated with doing my hair all the time. She suggest dreads. DREADS!? My eyes grow big with fear. They're so permanent! She tells me, "You can always cut them out." CUT!? My dream is to have long, glorious hair not to cut anything. So I say no. She shrugs and ends up cutting my hair anyway. A low cut. On my birthday *faints*
What do you call them?
Does it matter?...
Like many before me, I thought dreads was the correct term for locs. That negative cogitation made me assume locs were dreadFUL. And I was not a fan. As a kid I thought permanent (serious commitment issues) As a teen I thought stoner, ugly, a St. Louis boy thing. As an adult I've thought it's a trend. It's really been the last few years that I've thought dreads aren't so negative. It's your hair locing up. Locs Ooooo they're locs not dreads. People want to associate it with something negative, but it's not.
Whatever you call them it seems to be a matter of opinion less so facts. Facts are they were originally called Dreadlocks from the Jamaican culture that was the translation. However dreads are seen as messy and unkempt while locs are supposed to be more sophisticated and a connection to roots. -_-
Semi-freeform is my way of letting my hair do what it wants so it can be free WHILE being able to style it so I'm not just out here looking just any type of way.
Ways to Loc
As with anything I do I had to do my research. I'm no locing expert. I'm just sharing my journey on locing. I could be doing it wrong for you and your own journey. Okay, now that that's out there.
You have free form locs, sisterlocks, traditional locs, and bradelocz.
Free form is the original locing method. Sister locks are ultra tiny, traditional locs are usually strated by a beautician with all the parts, and bradelocz are started with braids. (I don't know much about this one to be honest)
When deciding to loc up my hair. I was trying to decide if I wanted to do it with the traditional twisted locs or to free form. My decision came to a mix of the two. Now for this to make sense I have to mention I was natural before. I was a free natural. Meaning often times I let my hair do it's own thing with little styling or manipulation often looking like I was locing my hair anyway. Since that was the case and I never really know how I want to style my hair I discovered locs could fix that issue.
I officially started locs in September so it hasn't been that long. I started from twist. I opted to do it myself and let them do what they were going to do. I do want thicker locs so I combined smaller twist to give it a bigger look. I only have about 50 or 60 locs in my head. It's hard to count. They are all pretty much budding at this point which is great. I did have trouble getting some of them to hold after doing my monthly wash. To fix that I braided some of them at the ends and that seems to keep the ones that are taking longer to loc together. I also had to fix some of the pieces that seemed to be pulling strands awkwardly by ripping my hair and conjoining the strands with their appropriate loc.
ripping- pulling hair from a loc
conjoining- putting hair together
This is only the fourth month, but I love my hair. It's starting to realize that I'm serious about letting it loc. I was a lazy natural often letting my hair semi loc in twist before combing it out so my hair was used to that system.
If you're considering locing I hope this gave you some insight. If you're just curious I hope this answered some things for you. If your just here to read and support... Thanks I like that in you.
Validation man... I've spent A LOT of years peeking over my shoulder waiting for someone to thumbs up me or give me the stamp of approval so that I knew I was doing the right thing. I was waiting for others to tell me who I could be which caused me not to be who I fully am.
How many people do that? All childhood we're told what to do, where to go, and how to be and some of us don't get out of that. Especially institutionalized people. There's a deep seeded fear that you'll mess up, get caught, and receive some sort of punishment. It is debilitating and irrational. However, it effects lives in real ways. That was me, living in constant fear of being reprimanded for saying or doing too much outside of what I thought the normal was. I didn't go against the grain unless I knew I wouldn't be alone while doing it.
It wasn't until I found myself alone, at a job I hated, in an apartment that kept lonliness a close neighbor, and in a abusive relationship that the tides of approval began to shift. If I was alone, but spent all of my time seeking validation from people who wouldn't be there in my weakest moment or even get assistance from spending my life following rules that left me in a horrible place then what was the point of being so fearful? Yea life is hard sometimes, the answers aren't easily found, and you might be in it alone sometimes. Why add fear to that?
When I stopped looking at others for approval I asked myself. How do I be me? I know who I am, but how do I comfortably be myself in public?
I got to explore, to analyze myself in ways I had never thought of, and figure out how I wanted to be who I am.
So how do you express who you are? How do you find yourself? Not who you want others to see you as, but authentically yourself. (Don't worry I'ma answer my questions this time.)
1) How do you be you?
In my opinion instead of waiting for permission I accept that I might need forgiveness, but I will not apologize for following my heart. Your own moral compass, beliefs, and standards apply in how you go about being you.
2) How do you comfortably be yourself in public?
I get to know myself in private first. (Mind out the gutter, now. Just me? Moving on...) This may seem obvious, but I wasn't comfortable being alone with myself at first. Who you are alone when there's no one watching is how you will respond and move in public MOST of the time. I mean somethings remain private... Like farting... But hey I'm just more conservative about my farts.
3) How do you "find" yourself?
Stop looking outward for a inward journey. There's no answer for the question we so desperately are trying to find by looking at others. I found myself by not allowing others to tell me who I am or who I could be.
Jump Rope Sis
Fitness. Life. Art. Travel.