So, i guess i have become that prodigal Black girl with the colorful hair… And Honestly, i think i am rocking it.
Not only have i not had braids in about 9 years. I have never gone as far as having any color not humanly possible on my hair. But yes, I did not only just Africanize my hair with Braids thereby making me Very Typically African. Which i am. But i have also added BLUE to it…
So i noticed i have received mixed reviews on this hair. LET ME EXPLAIN:
First, like i posted in my LAST POST: I am really that girl who is stuck with stubs and usually would never venture this far in hair color. So it must have come as a shock to many people to see me rocking Blue Braids.
when i got the braids. I got reactions from, delightfully surprised to approvals and such.
Here are ranges of REACTIONS i got
1st Reaction: “Now, You look African” Now, i would have pursued that if the person did not ask me who braided the hair and how i got this wonderful idea.
2nd Reaction: My professors oohed and Ahhed and touched my hair. They seemed to approve my new step out the box.
3rd Reaction: You are the only one i know that can pull this hair off and look classy doing it. I can never trust myself to do this, Am not that brave, but seeing it on you, i feel like it can actually be classy and now i want to try it
4th Reaction: Touches my hair “your hair is sooooo cool, I want it” ” You look like an anime character…” Thanks i guess? Now in the Middle of the reaction were reactions that left me a bit confused. I mean i have gotten to the part where i am now doing this for myself and really do not care about other’s opinion on my hair color choice. But i was still left a little confused
5th Reaction: This reaction falls under friends that just completely did not recognize me.
6th Reaction: Friends that just stare at my hair for so long and yet say nothing i wondered if maybe i had something stuck there unknowingly.
7th Reaction : Now, this reaction is also a “You have no idea how African you look” comments. So i am left not knowing exactly what to say. Thank you? Maybe?
8th Reaction: This Reaction also falls somewhat under the 7th Reaction but it deserves its own number and category cause i feel a little explanation is needed.
The Above “You have no idea how African you look” comment. Since coming to America, i have been categorized under “Oreo” by blacks, and “I don’t consider you black” by the others.
In case anyone haven’t noticed. I am DARK... I do not look mixed or white, My hair is beautifully kinky curly, when i have it out. My skin is no where near anyplace it could be mistaken and i have a round face to boot except for the few occasions when miraculously it looks oval (or maybe i am imagining this).But seriously, I am as African as it gets, I have a wonderful thick Accent i am not willing to trade for anything. and again I am Dark.
(PS: I know there are white Africans, so bear with me. I am only capitalizing on the Skin color to Emphasize the BLACK statements and not the continent. )
I have heard this comment so much on how i am not considered black. Yes, specifically as most Non-Americans like. We don’t like to be thrown all under one category just cause of skin color. We want to be recognized based on Nationality or Continent and not Skin color. But the context in which i have been hearing this, is different. Yes, I am not Black American. But i still am a dark skinned person. Who is actually 100% African, Nigerian and Igbo to be exact.
So back from my rambling. The fact that i got braids, kind of did a draw back to my friends. I am not sure what the hell they considered me before. But they seem so surprised at my braids it seems like someone had hit them in the head saying “Dude, look she is Black” or someone had peeled off a layer of film from there eyes saying ” Dude look she is black” I guess my braids were a sort of a reminder to them of who i really am, and where i really am from. Which all of them know, but never seem to take into consideration.
Which makes me Ask. If you don’t consider me black, What the hell am i?(that’s considering you can see my skin color) And another question that came to mind. If people are so shocked into remembering that I fall under the Singular American categorizing box where every dark skinned/pigmented person must answer to black, just because i got braids. Was i losing my identity?
Of course i don’t think so, As the first thing that i usually tell people is. I am Nigerian, i am traditional and i am completely in embrace of and with my culture and language. (Actually, i have on occasions been known to go off in my language. ) I understand that all this does not reinforce cultural identity. But i do know, i have not misstep-ed in claiming who i am, what i am, where i am from and why in Heavens beautiful Sky my Last name is so long and with so much consonants. And why the hell you can’t understand anything i am saying, when i speak to my mother on the phone .
So why the Hell am i not considered black? And why did just a BRAID serve as a reminder that i am a Dark Skinned Girl. (It’s not like it is something you can hide)
WATCH THE VIDEO OF A CLOSE LOOK AT MY HAIR ON YOU-TUBE
9th Reaction Finally, The last reactions i get are under the “What?”
Of course no one under this category has had balls big enough to spell it out. But from tones, It seems such behavior was unexpected of me.
At first i started with explaining to people under this category that this Braid and Blue hair thing actually started with me loosing a Bet and since i did it, i now love it. But now, I have graduated into the. “Do you like my hair? Scandalous right?” That’s my nice reversal way of saying. “shut your trap nicely and save it” Of course i have very few people under this category and surprisingly, they happen to be people, i noticed would rather prefer i was just a porcelain doll sitting and doing as told. So i have long moved along.
Question: Would you do this again?
Answer: If i see another pretty color that i can pull off and i really want to do it, then HECK YEA!!!.
For now i am taking little steps in doing and experimenting with my looks as long as it stays tasteful and i stay true to myself. The point is. I Love my hair. I love the braids, The blue color and I love most of all that it serves as a reminder that… HEY SUGARS …. She is Black, African and Nigerian.
She Wore it Red / Queen of Babbles
Signed Chioma Nkachukwu.