|gratuitous shot of my hair =)|
I was rocking straight hair a couple of weeks ago and I knew that the kids at my job were going to react to it (as a matter of fact, my co-workers made a big deal out of it too.) You may recall that some of the girls had been "inquiring" about when I was going to wear it straight so I can look pretty, blaze blaze and how reluctant I was because of babygirl A who gets made fun of for having a lot of natural hair. While the kids were in awe with my hair including the boys, (Is that all yours? You've had all that hair since you were born?) A came up to me with the biggest grin on her face, you're hair looks so pretty! she said, and holding down her hair she continued, I like that we can do different things to our type of hair! Out of everyone's compliments that made my week.
Now that I'm back to curly, a few girls actually expressed dissapointment. Keep in mind that I work with very outspoken and sometimes downright rude children. I went back and forth with a 4th grader yesterday who is known for being "outspoken" amongst other things. She asked me why did I have to go back to how my hair is now. Because I wanted to, I said.
Well I think it's ugly.
You look better with how your hair was before. You should keep it like that.
Well, I'll do what I want to my hair.
Well it's ugly what you're doing to it now.
She went on for a little longer, and she does the back and forth thing with everyone which is why I answered her pretty passively because I know she's looking for a reaction. Most people do anyway. At this point most of the kids I'm around know that I'm quite comfortable with who I am and I'll answer their questions about my background (because that almost always comes up for them) and I let the girls touch my hair because I know they are curious and I see nothing wrong with it. My co-teacher and I were actually talking yesterday about how the kids should learn more cultural history and teaching them about hair acceptance and just acceptance in general of their images (this is a predominately Black/Hispanic school) because the teasing about hair thing is pretty awful as I mentioned with one of the kids. My co-teacher is relaxed mind you, but I don't neccesarily think that's a bad thing. I'm fully team natural, but most kids probably do not have a choice in what gets done to their hair. And if readers have any suggestions on how I can go about getting a good message out to the kids, please feel free to let me know.