It’s something that’s not easy to talk about. After spending years in what, on the surface, appeared to be a dream job, I woke up one day, looked in the mirror and noticed a small patch of hair missing from my scalp. The nightmare of facing discrimination and aggression over an extended period of time in what was supposed to be a professional environment had taken its toll on me. Yet, I stayed. I wouldn’t quit because I had spent so many years trying to get to the place where I was at. Finally, the Universe, God, The Creator, Yahweh—whatever you want to call the Higher Power—started chipping away at my vanity as a means of commanding my attention.
I needed to GET OUT and fast. I felt the same sense of urgency reflected in Lakeith Stanfield’s eyes in that pivotal moment from the Jordan Peele horror film that reflect an unrelenting truth of American society: there is, you see, a simmering uneasiness with the mere presence of professional excellence when it presents in the form of a descendent of the historically oppressed and undervalued.
And still, I rise as the late, great Maya Angelou famously said. I rise thanks to the ancestors, thanks to the grace of God and thanks to a sense of knowing who I am and valuing myself even when placed in the eye of a storm of devaluation.
When said devaluation led to stress, trauma and eventually hair loss, I rescued myself. I got out.
Today, I am happy to report that I have recovered. But I recovered from the inside (first) and then outwardly. My hair grew back (praise Jesus)! The stress subsided. But, it all started with taking the steps toward loving myself first, which manifested from within my heart and soul on up to my hair roots, my crowning glory as some would say.
Watch my testimony above and learn more about Love the Hair You Wear, a natural hair movement and annual event to help women embrace their roots.
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