I have a lot of great childhood memories with my mom - but strangely enough, many of the ones that seem to stick out in my head somehow all seem to relate to getting my hair combed, of all things! You see, in my house and in the houses of many black families, getting our hair done was a two-day process. First, we had to take down the style that our hair was in at that time, then get it shampooed and conditioned - and typically, the next day involved getting it braided or pressed. My mom didn't use a flat iron; she used a good old-fashioned Madame CJ Walker straightening comb. I can still feel the warmth!:)
Although I hated this process, I realize that it was always special to me because my mom went through all that effort to make me look and feel good. She also listened to me. I could tell her everything about everything and she never seemed to judge. She had to be so annoyed with my non-stop conversation, but she never let it show! I remember trying to relax, even though it would sometimes hurt like crazy to get the tangles out. I remember the different forms of bribery she used: TV, a lollipop, Fresh-n-Fancy make-up, a good book or whatever else she could find to keep me quiet. I hated getting my hair combed, but loved how Mom made me feel and yes, I just adored myself when she was done:)
It's funny how everything comes full circle.
Fast forward a few decades and I now have three girls of my own and so many things seem to be centered around getting hair done. One of them is always getting their hair done...and just like my Mama, I try to use it as a time to hear what they are going through and keep their minds off the inevitable task of detangling! The good thing is that I'm sure they will adore themselves too, when it's all done!
I sure hope my girls can look back, beyond the pain of getting their hair done and one day realize that whether it's hair, or riding our bikes or taking a walk -- these moments are precious...
P.S. Just in case, you're looking for the final hairstyle at the end of this blog, remember that it's a two day process, so we haven't gotten there yet.