Hair and life reflections and 2012 goals

As 2011 is about to draw to a close, I just wanted to take a few moments to reflect. I’m not sure how coherent this post will be as it might get pretty random.

As far as my hair journey goes, this year could have been a little better. I didn’t retain as much length as I wanted to. Last winter, I had kinky twist extensions in for eight weeks as a protective style. When I took them out, while I did find that my hair grew about an inch or so, my ends were extremely ragged. I probably should have trimmed them before putting the extensions in as they were a little ragged then, but I didn’t. I wound up having to cut off about an inch of hair, which negated all the length I had retained. I’ve had to dust my hair twice over the last three months due to pesky single strand knots and raggedness of my ends. I don’t seal them consistently or give them the attention they deserve, so if I want to retain more length next year, I have to improve in this area. As far as products go, I don’t have a lot of complaints. Some people could fill up an entire store with all the products they have, but I’m not one of them as I neither have the money to buy a lot of stuff nor the space in my apartment to hold them all. As I’ve stated before, I’m a fairly lazy natural and I really don’t have the time nor the inclination to spend an entire day doing my hair. The simpler my regimen, the better.

However, even after being natural for two years, there are always new things to try on my hair. I get bored doing the same styles all the time, so there are times where I’m on the lookout to try something I’ve  never done before. I bought two packs of flexirods a couple of weeks ago as well as a hooded dryer. I’m planning on doing a flexirod set for New Year’s. I had bought a pack of flexirods shortly after I went natural and I mainly used them to do twist and curls (see Curly Nikki for a more detailed explanation on how to do the style). I abandoned the style fairly early on mostly for the fact that at the time, I didn’t have the hooded dryer and I would have to sleep with the flexirods in my damp hair all night, which were totally uncomfortable, to say the least. They sometimes wouldn’t fully dry by the next morning, so the style would end up being a hot mess. As I didn’t always have the drying time necessary to air dry with those things, I put them away in a drawer. Now after nearly two years, I will attempt to use them again in a different way and I do plan to make use of the hooded dryer. If the style turns out decent, there will be pictures in my next post. I actually don’t have any major plans for New Year’s Eve but I usually have people over for dinner on New Year’s Day. In my family, New Year’s Day was kind of a big thing. My mother and my aunt used to make hoppin’ john and collard greens every New Years Day and we’d have a party. Even though hoppin’ john is the official name of the dish, we never called it that. It consists of rice and blackeyed peas, so we just called it rice and peas. The hoppin’ john represent good luck in the new year and the collards represent money. The tradition is mainly a Southern thing, something I wasn’t aware of until I was an adult as I was born and raised in the Northeast, but I have heard of West Indians that eat similar foods on New Year’s Day as well. It’s one of my favorite holidays. Everything has a fresh start and anything is possible.

Which brings me to my main life reflection for the year. The last three months in particular have been a little challenging for me. Not all of the challenges have been documented here as I want to preserve other people’s privacy as much as possible. However, without the support that I’ve received from a number of people that are very dear to me, I don’t think I would have faced them with the grace that I’ve been able to muster. This isn’t to say that the year sucked for me, because it didn’t. I had a lot of good things happen as well. Life is peaks and valleys. It’s all in how you choose to respond to them. With that said, I’m looking forward to the new year and a fresh start. I hope the new year is bountiful for you as well.

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