Alyssa (L) Tatiana (R)
Tatiana (L) hair out before braiding /Cousin Alyssa (R) '97
As a white woman I never realized how much I took my hair for granted. Sounds silly doesn't it? Hair, what's the big deal? You get up, you wash it, you brush it, you dry it, you style it, and you go on your merry way.....me yes, Tatiana not so much! When Tat was born 14 years ago I had no idea that hair would be such a big thing...both literally and figuratively. =) Tat was born with a combo of my thick, thick hair and her Dad's curly hair. I had no idea how to do my own daughter's hair! Crazy huh!? Luckily my husband Jamie was brought up in a house full of women, because from the time Tatiana was born (she came out with a full head of hair....a "baby fro" no less) Jamie, along with Tat's Cousins and Aunts have done her hair. They would sit for hours combing and braiding, combing and braiding and then adding cute little barrettes. She would cry because her scalp was so tender and I would have to leave the room so I didn't hear her cry. Jamie and his Sisters all told me she would get used to it. Nuts! As Tat got older she wanted the long braids which Jamie did not know how to do so my business partner's daughter Yanna started doing Tat's hair. This entailed going out and "buying hair" so it could be braided into Tat's real hair. Who knew I would ever "buy" hair! Okay I didn't buy it...Jamie did. Now the fun begins.....8-10 hours of Tat sitting there while Yanna braids in every little braid. Yes 8-10 hours and it hurts while it's getting done! Then for two days after that her scalp is soooo tight from the braids her head hurts! Beauty or insanity?! Okay, now fast forward to present day and we have moved from the braids to wanting straight hair. Time for a perm. Wait, a perm? Don't perms make your hair curly? They did when I was growing up. White people perms, yes.....black people perms....no. Just the opposite....perms make their hair straight. Now Tatiana goes to a salon for black women and gets perms in her hair to keep it straight. This process takes about two hours each time and quite often has a "lovely burning" affect on the skin. Wow! Once again the price of beauty! Now you might ask what about swimming, what about the rain, what about washing........water is the enemy.....if it gets wet, it goes curly! Perm, history! Okay not history but then Tat gets to comb and straighten, comb and straighten. So today when you get ready ask yourself.... hair....simple.....right?