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Monday, 17 August 2009

When To Chop Locs?!?

...I had that dream again last night... The one where I realise that my locs are no longer there and I have a full head of loose napptural hair. Sometimes I feel devastated, sometimes I find myself feeling confused and sometimes I'm just SO glad my locs are no longer there...

I won't lie, there are times when I see a BAA or a cute TWA and wonder What If???? After having locs for all of these years, there are many things that keep me enjoying my locs as they are... and there are also times were I feel that my locs sometimes mean more to other people than to my Self... There is also the topic of attachment. Just how attached am I to my locs as a definition of who I am? After doing an inner-view a while back in this blog, the topic of attachment came up and it did make me think...

When I first started locing, I swore that I would never cut them off but now I can never say never. The beauty of natural hair is that it is beautiful in ALL forms! Letting go of old mind-sets and expectations (my own and by others) is one of the most freeing experience of the natural hair journey!

Expectations (even from other nappturals...) while locing: Assumptions that you want your locs to be butt-length long, that locing is always about you being a spiritual person, that locing should be the final stage of the napptural journey, that cutting locs will remove your inner-power...

While the above statements might be true for some locers (there are no rights/wrongs in a personal experience), I'm glad that locing and natural hair offers a wide range of choices and meanings!

So, when is the right time to chop your locs?
Many locers that I followed and who inspired me during the early years of my loc journey have gone back to loose hair. Some of the reasons that I hear are:

- When locs no longer provide excitement
- When there is a Self change and it is time to let go of old energy
- When the temptation to re-learn about loose hair is overwhelming
- A way of marking a new stage or time in one's life (like new motherhood etc)

I think for me, when the time comes that I feel the same strong(er) urge as I did when I started locs will be the time I let go.


Amina said...

I also learned that it is normal to go from loose, locs, loose and maybe locs again :)

Lala said...

I'm only 8 months in and already I have doubts about how long my journey will last.

Tamara said...

Oh wow, you've been reading my mind (and my post on nappturality, but this was posted up first, lol). I had a hair crisis the other day where i just felt like I needed my hair to be loose NOW! Thankfully, i worked through it and realized that I want to keep my locks as is for now. But I cant lie and say I dont envy all the loosies out there in the curly, coily, fluffy, kinky goodness (well, i have that in my root bed, but eh its not the same as a full fro lol).

IMANI faith daughter of the people love womb earth assata.... said...

We will know when its's time (if we are brave enough to trust intuition). I have locked three times and cut them a week after the solstice (2 months ago) and have no regrets! We are not our hair....

Anonymous said...

I just found your blog. I have been going through this thought for months now. I think to me it is an attachment thing and also the part about how will other people view me? AND what about that part of going back to HAVING to do something to my hair everyday....So many thoughts, and doubts. I haven't gotten a chance to read through all your blogs but I would really like to hear how/what people felt after they cut their locs. Thanks for this insight.

Bajan Lily said...

Thanks for this article. My sister asked me the other day whether we'd chop our locs and under what circumstances.
Thank you for your thoughts :)
Do you mind if I link to and reprint your article on my blog? (Full credit will be given of course).



oAsys said...

I cut my locs after 6 years a few months ago. I miss their beauty and style, but felt the need for something different. Also I had vowed to discontinue colouring my hair (after reaching age 50). Intead of trimming them out, i chopped them. Forgive me - I'm an extremist!!!
Finding it hard to do anything with the slighty salt-n-pepper 1" TWA. Tried gel, olive oil, hair grease, cremes. I just don't like this phase. But I am looking forward to having a head full of hair, an afro-puff and a full-fro eventually. It's just taking too long. And this hair is NAPPAY!

Lion-ess said...

I've had locs for 9 yrs and I'm now in the process of transitioning back to loose hair. Locs have really helped me in my journey towards womanhood ( had it from age 18 to 27) and I feel that I'm about to enter into a new era of my life and it's time to detangle myself from them.

Plus, they have become a clutch to me and it's really a hard process letting them go. I'm scared and nervous.... But I just feel as if it's time.

when I started locs Jan, 2001, I thought that I'd have them forever.
Feels as if I'm giving up my identity... I would no longer be called ras or princess by random strangers... lol! It's crazy!

But, I think that I have gain alot of courage through the locing process that will help me now in this new transition.

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