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“Do not remove the kinks from your hair, remove them from your brain” Marcus Garvey 
Curls in Motion   Growing up as a little girl, the only things I knew about my hair, & curly African hair like mine, was that: 1. It is grown to be chemically straightened (or chemically treated in some way or another) 2. Straightening such hair was mandatory because “in its natural state, it is simply unmanageable & unsightly.” This arduous process would take place every other month. The chemicals transformed my strong, black, tight little curls, to bone-straight, lifeless & VERY dry hair, which never grew beyond a certain length (just short of my shoulders). The slightest appearance of tiny little curls (dikgobe) along the hairline, was indication that it was time to bring out the chemicals. Of all the times I have 'relaxed' my hair, I can count on 1 hand, the amount of times I DIDN'T burn my scalp. It hurt & it smelt foul. (VERY FAR FROM RELAXING) Leaking sores, scabs & bald patches littered my scalp, so much so that they became a part of everyday life. If I wasn't nursing a burn or gathering hair that had fallen out, I was peeling off scabs from my scalp or trying to manipulate my hair into a style which would hide the bald little patches. Just as my scalp would start to recover, it was time to apply the chemicals again. After many years of this substance abuse, what remained of my hair, ranged in colour from brown, to an orange-brown shade. ALAS!, it seems I wasn’t using the 'relaxer’ as per instructions. Now that I know how I should be using it, I wouldn't go near it with a ten-foot-pole.(rubber gloves for application but no rubber gloves for my scalp...) It finally dawned on me, that I was putting myself through all this drama to look like someone I wasn't, I was hurting my body in the process & getting very bad results. Was I straightening my hair because I liked it straight, or because I hated it curly? The twisted part of it, is that in some African communities, ‘relaxing’ one’s hair symbolized sophistication & even affluency.