Wednesday, April 22, 2009

To Dread or Not to Dread, That is the Question

I have been locked for 8 years and 8 months. I love my locks. I think they say something about both my strength and my vulnerability at the same time...this is probably only apparent to me. Even in my off-beat, self-indulgent, self-expression, there is the understanding that I am reaching out to the Universe, to God, and begging that the Almighty touch me. It is at once a statement and a prayer.

That is the most articulate way that I have to explain without non-verbals, like touch. This is not just a 'hairstyle'. It is a prayer. As my writing is a prayer, as my paintings are/were prayers.

9 years ago, I could not open a magazine or look at an inviting, smiling face, without seeing dreadlocks. It seemed that the Universe itself was willing me in this direction. Now, I do not feel that connection. I do not feel that pull. It is a prayer that while I cannot, truly will not say is unanswered---I will say that today it feels like a desperate plea. It seems to be a yearning that is still unfilled.

Much like the caress that never comes from a lover. That moment one hopes for when a lover, the one that you pray is THE ONE, opens the door/window/wall/whatever and lets you know that your loving, praying, cooking, sexing, crying, wanting and waiting is not in vain. That moment that lets you know that who you are is more than just 'OK'. That lets you know that they won't be the same if you leave. There is a longing unanswered when that moment does not come.

Although I love my locks, I still long for that moment. That caress from the Universe, that cradle of comfort, peace, healing. So selfish, I know but 'every living thing wants to be loved'(Shug Avery, The Color Purple). Although I will always yearn for that caress from the Universe, I no longer feel the need to carry a hairstyle to signal that longing. I just pray that this emancipation from the physical does not set me adrift spiritually or emotionally. One battle that I have to fight is that I think my locks are incredibly beautiful. I think they make people notice me. I cannot imagine what I will look like without them. And the thought of facing a humid summer without them makes me want to cry.



  1. I used to wear my hair loc'd. I love them and still miss them. Loc's teach you so much about beauty and patience. It really is a lifestyle.

  2. locs are beautiful. my gf wanted them until she realized how much work they are to maintain. lol.

    and you're right they are great in humid summers. even though i am natural, i still deal with the humidity issue and my hair. but i am glad to be rid of the relaxer totally! i don't think i can go back there again!

  3. Alix, I'm curious what made you decide to come out of your locs and the magic question, for me, how did you decide to wear your hair?
    And Welcome.

    pinkchocolatesunshine, Welcome to you also. I laugh at people who think people do nothing to locs. I am just so confused about what to do with my hair. I was thinking that I would leave it braided for a while. But, (insert HUGE cloud of question marks)I just don't know what to do. For now I am just going to stay where I am.