It’s only been six weeks since I began my natural hair journey and did my homework before starting a hair care regimen. On the one hand, time has flown by – my hair has grown around one inch, and on the other hand, it seems to be proceeding at a snail’s pace.
An inch is good, I know, since according to my hair bible The Science of Black Hair, the average hair grows between ¼ and ½ an inch per month. But as unrealistic as it would be, I wish my hair would grow faster!
When you have become accustomed over the years to growing your hair half way down your back courtesy of weave and braid extensions, growing real hair takes some getting used to. You can manhandle a weave as much as you like as when it starts to get thin, you just buy some more!
But when you are dealing with your own hair, every lock is precious, because as natural veterans know, retention is the primary aim when it comes to growing afro textured hair. So you treat it like a baby: feed it with water, natural oils and butters and nurture it through protective styles in the hope that you will retain as much new growth as possible.
Well I have been doing that and I have been rewarded with an inch of growth so far, and still I cannot help but look wistfully and optimistically at the future, say 11 months down the line and wonder where my curly mane will reach?
Under my strict hair regimen I have restricted my protective styling to two strand twists; I wash and deep condition my hair once a week, spray it twice a day with a water mixture; keep it covered with a satin bonnet or scarf and sleep on a satin pillow!
There is nothing more I could be doing to nurture my hair – yet in my quest for growth I am almost driven to a state of insanity asking myself if indeed, there is anything else I can do to promote the growth of my hair. Then it dawns on me: the best thing I can do is to just be patient.
“All good things come to those who wait” and “patience is a virtue” are two proverbs that spring to mind. Yes, it makes sense; patience is an essential tool in growing afro textured hair, because its opposite, impatience could lead to rash actions.
Such as trying too many styles and too many products and putting your hair under unnecessary stress – low manipulation is the best strategy when it comes to growing afro textured hair.
So I will stick to my routine, stick to my two strand twists and count my blessings for my one inch of growth – while I am counting sheep waiting for the next 11 inches to follow!