You know when you want to reference someone in a manner that is obvious and that people will understand immediately? “Like, you know that guy, the one with the beard?” OR “The one with the bike?”. HAHAHA, well I have been known as Ida, The-One-With-The-Dreads! This has been me for the last 16 Years!
I once made a promise that I would cut my hair as soon as I gave birth to my first child. Like clockwork, when Mimi was born, I felt the urge to get rid of my hair. All of a sudden it started annoying me and I did not feel good in it any more. In the past, I had worn my hair, but lately, it had started to feel like the hair was wearing me. They say that a lot changes when you give birth, and I agree. I began to feel like I didn’t belong in the body that I had. All of a sudden, I wanted to change my style, my clothes, and my entire look. I tried to change my appearance to suit my new found self, but the hair kept holding me back. My dreads made me feel the way I had always felt as a girl and a teen and a twenty something- and now, they just didn’t “fit” anymore.
My hairdresser refused to cut my hair and instead tried to create “funky” hairstyles, which I bought into for a bit but wasn’t entirely convinced. I just wanted my hair gone. Apart from my hairdresser, I experienced the uproar from friends and family who felt they had helped me “raise” my hair from infancy or at least watch it grow. See, I made the mistake of consulting so-called stakeholders and boy were they emotional about the chop.
So what made me cut my hair 2 years after my initial urge to do so? I recently posted the tweet below:
And that is just it. In the spirit of being #yourbestself I made a decision to free myself from what felt like mental slavery. To free myself from fearing the smallest of things and harbouring anxious feelings towards them. Hair is just hair, yes, but after 16 years my hair could be seen as an investment in time and effort. Yeah. Truth is though, it represented a form of enslavement. I know this now especially in retrospect because now that I have short hair, I feel amazing.
I feel free. I feel empowered. I feel sexy and fierce and brave. I feel I can do whatever I choose to with not only hair, but my being too, and I do it unapologetically. And so when people ask me with sullen faces, “Why did you cut your hair?” I do not know where to start because, the truth is, and it just didn’t fit any more.