The Freedom that occurs with Self-Acceptance

Our first and last Love is….Self-Love (unknown)

I wanted to share something that I realized a while back when I started my natural hair journey. Well actually, this realization did not occur at the outset, it occurred when I realized that I accepted my natural hair.

I realized FREEDOM.

My father always used to tell me, “you are free when you live within the rules”. Hearing this as a rebellious teenager didn’t make much sense to me. I thought he was just trying to justify my curfew…but as I got older, my dad’s words seemed wiser than I had ever known.

There will always be rules and boundaries within society, schools, work and of course ourselves. If I accept the laws and rules of society etc and live within them, I am free. If I accept the universal law of attraction (be it positive energy, finances, happiness, companionship etc), I am free. Living “outside-the-box” is a great perspective to have and there will be consequences, but as long as you accept the consequences you are still free. I do believe that I can be anything that I choose to be therefore my boundaries are not limiting-but they exist!

In relation to myself, my beautiful black skin will always be this tone. The sun (or lack of sun) may play a role on my skin tone at times…..but the range of “darkness” to “lightness” it receives is unique to me. My smile will always be big; my height will generally be tall.

As far as my hair was concerned, it took much longer for me to realize that if I accepted it, my hair (and mind) would flourish. My height was something I noticed as I got older AND in comparison to others. Comparisons are deceiving. If you realize that it is just an observation that’s ok but once a comparison is made in order to place a value (or lack of) on yourself (or another)-that can be detrimental.

In my youth, I did not notice my hair in comparison to another because my hair was just like every little black girl I knew. As I got older, my hair (being permed at this stage) still resembled the accepted norm. It wasn’t until about 6 months into my natural hair journey that I realized I was an “other”. I was no longer sporting a perm that flaunted my length, it didn’t flow, it didn’t really move and the height was obvious.

This change affected me but not drastically because I did not compare myself to anyone else.

Having no comparisons to judge myself by, I persisted with my journey and what naturally occurred was an acceptance of my new image, which is my true image. Since accepting the rules or boundaries that I have within myself, my body, my hair and my characteristics-I have experienced a freedom that is peaceful.

Feels great to just be!

I accept my hairs lack of defined curls, I accept its shrinkage, I accept its growth spurts and the challenges that come with it, I accept that my hair grows upwards and defies gravity; I accept that it takes a long time to dry and set a twist-out.

I live within my boundaries, accept them but do not allow them to limit me-my hair will not be silky straight when I wake up, but it can be. My hair will not grow 10 inches over a four hour period-but I’m ok with growing about 6-10 inches per year….and not having to remove it afterwards. My hair will not stay in a permanent state or style, humidity will affect it-AND it should! I am a breathing, living organism and humidity is a natural occurrence-so since nothing wrong is happening when it frizzes or puffs up-I am ok with that too.

And by accepting all the characteristics of my hair, I am free. I am free to live; I am free to find better things to think about, I am free to experiment and know its going to come right back to me. I am free to run in the rain, wash my hair all the time, I am free to scratch my scalp whenever!

This calming freedom, that occured with my self-acceptance, was my biggest gift to myself and I hope that it is just as big of a gift to you!

Great Quote

MeyAlso featured on iHEARTmyhair.com

Allow me to *re-introduce myself….

HopefulCurlyWelcome all to Mane Attention!

Thank you for taking your time to browse. I hope this site is friendly, humorous, easy-going and informative. I would like for us to share our natural hair experiences, stories, challenges and triumphs.
I am not against chemically treated (permed) hair but I am for natural hair.
Since our hair in its natural state is something new or foreign to some of us I
thought placing attention on this aspect of our beauty is only right.

I am proud of black beauty and I love our
versatility therefore I hope that if you have chemically treated hair you too
will join and give our site your perspective as well.  It’s been less than 2 years for me on this
journey so I’m still familiar with the process, highlights and challenges of
chemically treated hair.

For my community I hope to be able to bring
attention to local hair salons that focus on our type of mane, beauty stores
that cater to natural hair products and general business’ in our city that we
can go to for products, tools and inspiration. I also hope to catch some
pics of natural beauties in our community.

I’ve tried as much as possible to give you
my story in some posts I’ve created. I hope this site can grow and develop more
profoundly. I thank you in advance for your positive energy (I try to avoid the
negative). Please be respectful, kind and open-minded but most importantly give
your Mane Attention!

Mey

Great hair products in Ottawa……..Cantu Shea Butter

Just wanted to share some places for products that can be great for natural hair here in Ottawa. I’m sure these places aren’t unknown…..but I hope to add what I find as often as I can.

Mama Cee’s- I personally go there for their Cantu Shea Butter line…..loved this since I found it 3 years ago in BK. Not as $cheap$ as Brooklyn….so this is in my special product category 😉

Lavender Scented Whipped Shea Butter

I’ve found the secret to a great whipped consistency for my Shea butter. Maybe it wasn’t a secret, and I’m just late….but I found it!

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I took Naptural85’s advice and whipped the Shea while it was soft at room temperature.

For my previous batches I would melt the Shea in the microwave and place it in the fridge to harden a little-then mix. This worked well….heck even plain raw Shea butter is da bomb! But this earlier consistency was more like a pomade.

This time….I got it. It feels light and airy, it melts nicely and has a soft feel.

I’m definitely going to whip my Shea in this manner from now on.

For this batch I mixed,

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Raw Shea butter, organic virgin coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, vitamin E and Lavender essential oil.

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Raw Shea, about 1 cup

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Mashed Shea w spatula to soften

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Added about 2-3tblsp of coconut oil

I missed the pic showing the amount of olive oil….it was a cap full, about 2-3 tablespoons.

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Cap full of vitamin E, about 1tsp

I added about 10 drops of Lavender essential oil, I could have added less…but I wanted the lavender fragrance to stand out a little.

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Final product

I wanted to try Lavender this time for the scent but also because it’s said to prevent baldness and encourage hair growth.

Hopefully this will help w my postpartum shedding B-)

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My poor hairline

Coming up soon….hopefully :)

Good day to all,

I have been lazy when it comes to taking pics and therefore I haven’t updated MA the way it should be updated.

I will definitely be posting pics from my 2 year natural anniversary. Sept 29th 2010 I chopped all chemically processed ends out of my hair and this past Saturday I flat ironed my hair again to measure any length retention.

I can say with absolute certainty that straight tresses are no longer a style that I can achieve and rock without hair accessories, a twist out, a bun or ponytail. My hair is too big.

Big and curly is one thing, but big and straight is not my thing….at least not now/yet.

I’ve also discovered that my ends are horrible! I do not take good care of my ends when my hair is curly and it is very evident now that my hair is straight. I am kinda mad at myself for that…..but some scissors will do the trick. I hate the idea of losing maybe 1 inch but I rather get rid of the mess now.

So stay tuned for updates on my length/ 2 year anniversary, my trim, the Green House Effect which I love and some styles I will try to achieve while my hair is straight. I have also been doing some research on pregnancy and hair growth, I’ll definitely add some pics of my transition in that area 😉

Thank you again,

Mey

 

 

 

My Natural Hair’s Impact

(originally posted on iHEARTmyhair.com)

It may sound boastful to admit, and maybe a little pre-mature to declare but I’ll just say it….

I have become a Powerful Natural hair figure.

I haven’t been natural for very long (almost 2 years) but I’ve already made an impact!

We ALL make an impact in the lives of those around us but we may be too humble to recognize our power.

I have chosen to recognize my power in this facet and I know who I am doing it for.

It’s all for my baby girl.

my princess

As mothers it is obvious when we see our girls imitating us (wearing our heels, clothes and wanting to be like us) that we have an important role to play. Specifically relating to natural hair, my daughter has opened my awareness to the fact that the self-acceptance I try to exercise with my own hair and image can impact her opinion on her own image now and when I’m gone. 

My beautiful 6 year old princess has allowed me to recognize my power through her beautiful brown eyes.

brown eyed girl

I’m amazed to notice that her vocabulary is much more different than the vocabulary I used as a child. She mentions curls, waves and fluffy-ness with pride. She understands shrinkage and how her waist-length-hair will appear shorter and why I use oil on our hair. She enjoys fragrant conditioners and definitely notices how soft they make her hair feel. At times she looks forward to her hair’s wash-day!

I do my best to have conversations with her about how perfect her hair is.

Not in comparison to anyone else.

My message to her is that her beauty does not diminish anyone else’s beauty and neither does their beauty diminish hers.

When people tell her that she has “good hair” I make it a point to correct whoever is mistaken in saying that. I remind my princess that what she has is hair, and that EVERYONE’S hair can be good or not–so-great depending on the day.

She is not better because of her hair and no one is worse because they do not have it.

It’s just hair, I know, but I want this to be a good starting point when it comes to her idea of beauty. She is perfect the way she is just like her Mother is perfect the way she is. My hair is my crown and I am in full acceptance of its beauty. She too has a gorgeous crown with no alterations or variations required. I hope this lesson resonates with her and is applied to all aspects of her life.

Authenticity is all that is needed. Confidence will naturally follow.

Hopefully you can see within yourselves how you too have made a positive impact on someone else’s thought towards natural hair. They may not have decided to big chop or transition in the same manner as you but planting the seed that allows them to even think about or recognize the choice to be natural is a great attestation to your power.

I definitely have some Powerful Natural hair figures of my own. Of course my mother tops this list; my grandmother also has some gawgus hair. Oprah, Queen Latifah, Erykah Badu, Chaka Khan, Diana Ross’s look, Tracee Ellis Ross….and I’m sure the list can go on-and-on.

Who are your lovely Natural hair figures?

Have you noticed any impact you’ve made since returning back to Natural hair?

 

Mey

Mother’s Day Giveaway at iHEARTmyhair.com !!!

Good morning,

In preparation for this Sunday, Mother’s Day, there is a great give-away to enter at iHEARTmyhair.com.

 

You’ll have the chance to win a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner PLUS hair tonic from Locsuria Natural Haircare System, as well as the popular iHEARTmyhair T-Shirt!

Hurry, all you have to do is visit iHEARTmyhair.com and let them know what your hair combing experience is/was like with your mother!

Have a great day!

Mey