Wednesday, 4 December 2013
Five dreadful years.
This month marks five years since I began my dreadlock journey. It's been an interesting year for my dreadlocks and me, as we have wrestled with our future together.
In the past year my dreads have grown more than in the previous four years put together. There have been times when even I could see they'd grown in the space of a week. At four years, they were just below my shoulder blades; at five years, the longest ones touch my hip bones.
Well, they would do if I hadn't cut them...
When you begin your dreadlock journey, you think about your dreads all the time. You touch them all the time and you want to look at them all the time. This was me for about the first three years. Then your dreads start becoming - for want of a better phrase - part of you. You identify as a dreadhead but, because your dreadlings no longer need your constant mothering, you don't think about them as much.
So I was at that point. But I was also at the point - with this super-fast-growing pile of dreads - of getting headaches nearly every day. I have such a ridiculously sensitive scalp that I couldn't tie my hair up for long. Left loose, my dreads were spectacularly beautiful but they were also interfering with my ability to hoop. And you know, when that happens, you must do something!
So I was ummming and ahhhing for months about my dreads ... was I ready to release them or did I want to keep them? And then my dear husband came up with a solution: "Let me give them a trim," he said one recent Sunday morning. Without hesitation I handed him the kitchen scissors and we headed outside.
John chopped about 15cm off the bottom of my dreads. Immediately my hair felt lighter and hooping was easier [oh joy!]. I can even wear my dreads tied back and not get a headache. The downside is that I of course no longer have stunning, hip-length dreads. But I'm okay about that!
I may yet get rid of my dreads - but I don't think that time has come.
PS. Here are before and after shots: