Fruit in Bloom!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Tangle Beef!

Centric by XSUDEZ
Can I just take a minute to say...I HATE detangling my hair!  I mean, seriously.  Just typing the word makes my tongue go dry and I start to perspire slightly on my top lip!! C'mon you guys!!  I can NOT be alone in this!  Really!  Doesn't the tension in your neck begin to build from Wednesday night just thinking about the effort that Saturday is going to entail.  Now, I know some sisters have these AMAZING regimines which include finger detangling, copious amounts of some exotic oil, two strand twisting or some such styling and several hours of romantic comedies.  As much as I aspire to such dedication with my 'fro, I would be a liar of the highest degree to even remotely claim that I ascribe to the same disciplines.  For me, my extra wide tooth comb, a new botte of Burt's Bees conditioner and an uninterrupted shower (thanks to hubby running interference with the kiddos) and that is all I've got in me.  Or, in that case, time for!  I know I should then graduate to the, slightly finer, wide tooth comb and then protectively style to ensure stretching my coils and ensuring a better detangle next time.  That amongst mountains of other advice that I am sure I should be taking to make the experience less traumatic next time around....but do I do it.....nah!  Apparently, though my left brain knows what should be done, my free spirit, hippie right brain somehow still believes that the Detangle Fairy will appear on Friday night and I will arise Saturday morning with easily manuverable tresses!  Don't bet your Kinky~Curly on it!!  How is it we can know better but not do better?

Newness of Morning by Raheli's Brush
Galatians 5:1  "Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage."  NKJV

It is so easy to slide into old habits....and to justify them!  Even when we know that doing things the right way may be more challenging but will save us headache in the long run.  Yet, somehow we wallow in the stubborness of it all.  Really, avoiding the "tangles" of life has more to do with busying ourselves doing what we should be doing.  Then there is less room to fall into it if we are too busy doing the opposite of it.  In this verse, Paul was telling us all to basically stick to what we know works!  Once we understand the freedom we have in Christ, stand firm in it so that we don't allow the slavery of sin to take us hostage!  A steady regimine of communing with the Lord will definitely cut down on having to do major Spirtual Surgery on a regular basis!  It doesn't have to be a complex regimine, just something tailored to our Spiritual needs and sincere to the soul.  Detangling the difficult areas of our life is a daily process.  It must be done carefully and steadily.  Prepare to loose a few things and sometimes we have to cut some knots out!  But the Holy Spirit is a great conditioner and He can make the process a whole lot smoother if we allow Him!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The "Anti-Naturalista"

Afro Moments by Wendy Nikolle'
So, what is a "Naturalista" anyway?  Well, I guess since its a completely invented word, it can mean almost anything! LOL!  But, my definition is a woman who lives by the intangible.  She enjoys keeping her life and her look in an organic state.  No, I don't mean "raised with out chemicals" organic.  Although, that may apply at times!  I mean organic as is full of the life that flows from the inside.  Her home is filled with life.  Her workplace is affected by her "life energy".  Her personal style flows from her life energy, not from a desire to keep up with trends set by outward influences.  That doesn't mean she is never just means that she wouldn't pick up a trend if it did not truly reflect her inner self.  Now that we've got that out of the way, let's talk about the "Anti-Naturalista"!
Going natural is one of the hottest trends out there right now.  When done by a Naturalista for personal and sincere reasons, it is a great expression of self-contentment and positive confidence.  When done by an "Anti-Naturalista", it becomes a mundane series of conversations about hair typing, fighting shrinkage, and streams of self pics documenting length and curl definition.  I see you're about to throw a handful of Eco Styler in my face!  Just give me a second!!! I am NOT saying that chats about products and techniques are not necessary when caring for our delicate coils.  I am saying that when I get an email from you and the first item you address after greeting me is always an offer to send me a new pic of your latest hair status or a detailed description of how bouncy your curls were after treatment thus and such.......sigh.......I think you might be an Anti-Naturalista.

Lisy2 by Wendy Nikolle'
II Timothy 3:6-7  "For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of truth." ESV
Now, this verse was the apostle Paul warning Timothy, a young pastor, of how to spot false teachers and false prophets.  Even in Biblical times there were those who were using Christianity as a means to emotionally manipulate people.  Wow.  Not that my hair is NEARLY as crucial as my SOUL, but I can't help but see a parallel between sisters who become emotionally crippled by depending on false doctrine that feeds their insecurities and sisters who become obsessed with commentary on their tresses because it affirms their beauty.  The women Paul was talking about were injured and damaged, therefore it was easy for these manipulators to capture their attention.  Also, they were band wagoners.  Wherever the running fad is coming from is where they want to be.  Where they NEED to be.  This gives them a sense of belonging.  Talking incessantly about our hair does not help us "belong" with each other.  It keeps us distracted FROM each other.  We become trapped in a constant cycle of narcissism; identifying with our hair rather than letting the hair become part of our identity. 
Let's try a fresh approach.  Let's talk about our hair as much as we talk about our teeth or our kneecaps.  Naturalistas set their hair free from the pretense of chemical processing NOT so they can draw attention to their waves every chance they get.  They do it because they want their hair to be as free as their spirit.  Don't entertain Anti-Naturalista's in their obsessions.  There may be some deeper emotional and spiritual needs there that manifest in their hair fetish.  Let's encourage our girlfriends to define themselves not their curl type.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Rep yo' Frat!

Harlem by XSUDEZ
When you go natural after spending years relaxing your hair, you join a somewhat sacred sorority!  I didn't realize that I had even been initiated until the first time I passed a fellow "Big Chop" whom I didn't know and she gave me a knowing smile and polite head nod.  I instinctively did the same...what is that?  A secret handshake?!  It isn't something you have to talk about with EVERY natural sister you meet...its this silent understanding that behind that new strut brimming with self-assured confidence there is a vanity full of shea butter, aloe juice, miscellaneous conditioners and random oils that are being mixed and matched to DEATH searching for the magic combo to grow the fro!!  Too much!! I just want to get everyone letter jackets and learn a step routine! LOL!!  All the members of Nu Phi Lambda (Natural for Life) throw your sign in the air! ROFLMBO!!
Quintessence by Wendy Nikolle'
Psalm 133:1 "Behold how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity!"

Sisters of all shades don't always get along like we should.  It's like Spike Lee's "School Daze".... but without all the cool musical numbers.  Personally, I don't want to hear anything about racism from any of us until we can treat each other with a little more respect.  Affirming our different shapes and hues creates an environment of security that allows us all to blossom in a healthy way.  We are all more beautiful when the beauty is reflected off of each other.  There is no skin too dark or too light, no hair too silky or woolly and no body too lean or thick that we cannot admire and encourage each other in our efforts to bring out our best "selves".  I think that's what the Master Artist had in mind when he pulled the colors from the sun and earth and painted his children.  After all...when the letter jacket goes on, aren't we suddenly all wearing the same colors?