I really wanted dreads, really, really. I researched about how one cares for dreads, how to sleep in them, style, wash. I thought I was prepared for the upkeep, but I was mistaken, plus no one really told me how bad they would hurt!
I blame it on my childhood perms. I have a soft head, sadly. I have a lot of hair, LOTS, so perming was an event. I was called "Poodle" for a good reason. It was also a time of tears. All the Aunties, plus my mom and my grams would be pulling on my head from all different directions for hours it seemed. Then, I had to get some gaseous concoction sprayed all over and then the cotton they stuffed under all your hair...I'm clenching my teeth just thinking about it. If you so much as wimpered they would pull even harder. I whimpered a lot. Then I always had to wait forever for the perm to take. It. was. the. worst. My hair doesn't take perms, lightening or dreads well it appears.
I had to crimp my hair before dreading it. Even then, when I washed it, it would just fall out in the shower, so I had to start over again. My hair is so straight nothing holds. People always ask how I get it so straight, baffled, I always tell them, I blow dry it. What I would give for some curls, or dreads.
I really did like it. I loved big hair, still do. My favorite stage was about a month in on the right. I mean it was large.
I really don't do much with my hair. Sundays are the only day that I even "do" my hair. Dreads required a lot of time. Like at least 2 hours maintenance a day. If I didn't then I ended up with one giant dread. Since I really didn't want to take care of my hair for 2 hours a day I would just let it mesh into one. This resulted with two hour Sunday hair sessions where my mom would sit and help pick apart each dread, hair by hair. It was just like the perm days!! I would whimper, she would pull. While sitting through a particularly painful section of hair I couldn't handle it anymore. I was ridiculously mad and told her so. While I am very grateful that she would do this for me, it just got tooooooo much. Plus my relationship with my mom wouldn't last if we had to continue this.
Sigh. This towards the end. It was awesome, it was big, and hidden within was a lot of dandruff and hair so tangled I suddenly knew why Britney Spears just buzzed all her hair off. While I kept these deep, sad thoughts to myself, I finally expressed my feelings to a friend who has known me since Jr. High.
I explained all my woes to her. She understood them all. When I told her how much it hurt, she said "Harm, dreads aren't for you." But, I was only three months in! I couldn't fail now. She said "Harm, you have dreads, you've done the dread thing, it's okay."
That's all I needed to hear, she convinced me that they weren't for me and I had done valiantly.
After a few days of only having 1/6 of my hair untangled I spent hours researching super short hair cuts. If I thought the upkeep hurt, taking our dreads was even WORSE. I would sit on the bathroom counter top while the kids were napping and pick piece by piece apart. I was ready to chop it all off. I even asked the husband what he thought of a Pink style hair cut. I was ready. Luckily, I couldn't make a hair appointment soon enough to make my spontaneous chop.
A month later, I had painstakingly picked out each hair, one by one, because that's how you have to do it. I lost a lot of hair that month. Think of those super cute felt balls everyone has now, except made out of my hair. Think giant sized felt hair balls, the size of your fist and then multiply it by four. That's how much hair I tossed in the toilet.
I really wasn't meant to have dreads, really. I mean, a couple days after all my hair was washed, my hair was completely straight once again and you wouldn't have even known. (tears.) I went to get my hair cut and my hair stylist was blown away about how healthy my hair was. "Silky" was the word she used. Sigh.
Well, I guess it's okay though, I can finally check it off my bucket list. Because, it was fun for a while. I keep thinking, if I had been 20 or just out of high school, I totally would have done it and had time to keep it up. But then, the husband would never have married me.
Mid-Mid-life crisis averted.