So It Begins

I am enjoying a cold beer and relaxing in my Lush bubble bath as I write this.

You know those moments when you’re scarfing down some pizza and already thinking of seconds? When you’re kind of comfortably full but it’s so good you consider getting more?

I have become an insatiable sloth compared to my last year’s self and guess what. I see it and I feel it and neither make me feel good.

I don’t have a lot of time in my day. I generally have 2.5 hours between my getting home from work and going to sleep. That’s not a lot of time for anything. But I realized I’m not going to see any changes by not doing anything so guess what my options are: continue doing nothing and see/feel it and continue feeling like absolute crap OR to put in some effort, feel some discomfort and see some change that I can feel good about.

So! Tomorrow I’ll be at the gym at an ungodly hour making my first step towards looking and feeling more like me. I’m hoping it won’t take long before it’s a routine and something to look forward to. Wish me all the luck. This bath beer will be my final beer for a while *sob*. So I’m going to enjoy it.
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Surprise Yourself

So I was playing Wii Fit yesterday, Wii Golf to be exact — I’m going somewhere with this, don’t worry — and I was swinging away, trying for that hole-in-one. I ended with a score of 170! New highest score! No big deal, I guess I’m just awesome. Then I thought to myself, that was fun, let’s try it again but this time left handed.

I’m a righty with everything. My right hand cooks, cleans, brings the chips from the bag to my mouth while my left hand plays a supporting role. You know… holds the pot as I stir, holds the duster as I sweep, holds the bag as I eat chips. The one thing my left hand is decent at is typing, but even then, only my right hand uses the space bar (is that just me??).

So I turn around and give it a go with my left hand. I definitely feel the twist in my hips, a pull on my shoulder, this is different. I’m swinging this remote, and Wii Me is making some awesome shots. What’s this about? This is my dumb, slow side. I finish the round and am astonished to see… 180. New. Highest. Score.

For REALS?! I thought that hand was useless.. but had I ever tried? No. So what makes me think I was incapable? Standing there I came to the realization… this was something I had to remember. You think something is useless, pointless, incapable? Why? Because you’ve never tried?

Try.

See what happens. You may surprise yourself.

She Is Not Her Hair

I got together with two of my college friends late last year. They had both moved out of town, one for school and the other for work, and while we all kept in touch this was the first time we had all been together since grad. My one friend J had mentioned earlier how she had inexplicable lost about a dime-sized patch of hair on her head. Strange. When I saw her though the patch had grown to be a little bit bigger than a quarter. But no big deal. After that she visited doctors and naturopaths, endured needles to her scalp and other methods of treatment.

About a week ago she texted us saying: “My mom is here. She came to take me to my horrible specialist appointment today where the doctor said I for sure have alopecia and there is nothing I can do to stop it. I cried at the appointment and in the street and at Milestones but then my mom fed me lots of wine and spinach dip and cheese and got me a really pretty jacket. Woohoo moms! So I might just shave my head instead of waiting for it to fall out and watching it get thinner and thinner?”

I had no idea it had progressed. She said she had 12 patches now. She went on to say: I am not my hair! I really like it though, but I don’t need it!

I was so happy to hear her say that. When I cut my hair it was a change for me. A shift. But my hair grew back. So not being in control, knowing after you cut your hair, it won’t come back entirely: that takes some mental adjustment for sure. She always has my support and she is going to be gorgeous with her hair or without because it won’t change who she is. She’s still the same beautiful, hilarious, quirky woman she has always been and for that I’m thankful. But I hope on days when she’s not feeling so pretty, that she still smiles because she is not her hair.

Natural Beauties!

I love love love reading about girls’ and their big chop! I feel like mine was so long ago (not really) but I remember that day, how I felt, how I looked, my thoughts, my insecurities, my pride. If you’ve recently big chopped I would like to introduce you to a couple of others.

Nov 29/12, The Agrarian Bard – The Big Chop

Nov 20/12, Natural Vibe – The Big Chop

Nov 20/12, JoyYouCantTake – The Big Chop

Oct 12/12, Finding Kayy – Big Chop!

Sept 30/12, Sincerely, Jess – New

Dec 8/12, Sisi Yemmie – I Big Chopped (video)

It’s also interesting to think how many others out there share my big chop anniversary… Any other March 14 Big Choppers out there? 😉 I’m sure I’m one of many!

It’s a great community out there of naturalistas. If you have questions or concerns, surf the web, engage with others whether it’s email, twitter, through blogs. Don’t be shy, introduce yourself, ask questions, share your pet peeves, share your joys! You’re a beauty!

Happy Sunday!

A Letter To Rocco

Dear Rocco,

It’s good to see you in this state. Healthy and full. I know it wasn’t always this way and well, I’m sorry. I’m sorry it took me years to realize you were a great gift to my head. But… I never really knew you. You were just a bit of fuzz even when I was two. When I was closer to five you made more of an appearance. Awkwardly standing on my head. After that mom made sure to braid you and treat you well. Except for those days when the hot comb would come out. Mom didn’t mean to burn you and the tops of my ears. She put you in box braids and you grew. You were cool.

And then I forgot about you.

Remember those times when I put that cream on you? It burned but I told you to chill and just relax. I thought you were sooo uptight. I know, I know… You were pissed and you broke off and stuff. I was pissed because you broke so we didn’t really talk a lot. I just flat-ironed you. Nearly daily. So you broke off some more. Let’s just say we weren’t very good at communicating. Or maybe you were communicating but I wasn’t listening.

Back in February you broke off so much that there wasn’t a lot left of you. Actually you left a great bit of length in front but not a lot anywhere else. You made me look kind of silly. I didn’t really know what to do. I watched YouTube and read blogs and realized: “I don’t have to treat you like that.” So that’s when I took you in and gave you a fresh start.

You see?

It was sort of an audition. I’ve known you for 24 years but I never let you be you. When I let you do your thing 7 months ago today I could see you your excitement. It was your chance to shine and baby you put on your tap shoes and danced. I watched. I learned. I wanted to know what made you flourish so I watched other girls and their curls and did what they did. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t, but this time when you talked, I listened.

You’re free. I think you’re happy finally. All you wanted was to be you. And that’s all I need.

-Ndeshimona

A Poem I Wrote :)

My curly halo, often a bramble

Make it shine, make it shake.

Oils and creams, I know what it needs,

I listen as it speaks, it whispers:

‘Look at me reach’

Its teachings are subtle,

No room for rebuttal, I nurture,

I ramble on, put my words in my blog.

I tweet at the throng,

Quietly, and then strong.

A twist and a coil,

My fingers, they toil,

to shape my crown.

Look what I have now!

Who out there can tell me,

My hair isn’t polished.

I shut out that nonsense.

Breathe deeply and smile,

There’s no denying,

the strength of my roots.

My roots.

My roots.

My grandmother’s smile, my father’s laugh,

My mother’s long fingers, my grandfather’s twinkling

Eyes, with pride, look upon my head,

From above and with love,

My hair just like theirs.

-Ndeshimona, Oct 8, 2012

No Heat For Rocco

Rocco has had 6 blissful months without intentional heat touching his strands. I don’t think I would have ever thought that there would be a time where I could walk away from the my flat iron. Honestly.

When I first moved away for school one of my first purchases was a flat iron. A good one. Me and roomie-friend went halfies on a $100 salon quality flat iron. I was elated. I could replace my crummy drug store flat iron with this sleek salon one. Life was good. I remember one Christmas, my roomie and I were both heading home and we were trying to work out who would take the flat iron with them. I think I ended up taking it because her mom had one. Ooh those straight styles. I was a pro with the heat protectant. Clipping the mess of curly hair up and taking the flat iron to it. What a feeling as my hair steamed and lay down stiffly. A pile of straw-like hair on the floor in front of my mirror where I had been surrounded by clips and styling sprays. Off I went, with my hair so straight. Some of my itty bitty hairs sticking straight up, but overall a good look.

And then March happened. Suddenly I had no use for a flat iron. I had no use for a hair brush. Or blow dryer. Or ponytails. Or clips. My hair didn’t need any manipulation. There wasn’t enough hair to manipulate! Perfect. I got used to feeling the wind on my neck and my ears. I got used to having shorter hair than my brother. I got used to reaching up and not having a whole lot going on up there.

And then the weirdest thing happened. My hair grew! HAH! You know when you have one of those days after your BC and you look at yourself in the mirror or you just tell yourself, ‘my hair isn’t going to grow’. I don’t know why, it’s so illogical. But I was so happy and surprised when I would grab a curl and pull it and see, that curl has so much potential. It has so much more going on than it shows. My hair grows!!

6 months later and my hair is thick, resilient, it is curly and most of all it’s happy. I think Rocco is happy. He may not be the most cooperative but life is good when there’s no flat iron or blow dryer coming to get him.

This isn’t to say I’ll never straighten my hair again. Straight looks are great and I can’t wait until I have some amazing length to show off. Maybe on my one year BC anniversary I’ll give it a go. It’ll be strange, picking up the blow dryer or picking up the flat iron. I know, without a doubt, it will be scary. Heat damage is my NUMBER ONE fear as a natural girl. All those years I destroyed my hair in an attempt to remove the curl. Now the thought of that curl remaining straight and lifeless and have it all my doing would really be disheartening. So I know I’m going to be learning everything I can about doing a blow-out and straightening natural hair. I’ll be there in 6 months youtube tutorials! What a journey. So glad it happened 🙂 I have to say… I’m thankful that 6 months ago my hair was in such shit shape, breaking and falling off everywhere, that I had no choice but to cut it all off. So thankful =)