Love is Love

LOVE IS LOVE

Do you believe

The words escaped

Her lips in a whisper

Almost as though

She had exhaled

The words like spent air

Technically, carbon dioxide

My grandmother

Was not prone

To speaking at length

Actually, I knew her

Not to talk at all

As she died

Long before I was

A twinkle in my parent’s eyes

And yet her she sat

On the corner of my bed

This was a dream

Or so I kept

Repeating to myself

Still, I did not

Pinch myself, thinking

It would be a tad

Disrespectful

Then she repeated

Her question

This time louder

This time with an object

As well as a subject and verb

Do you believe in love?

I looked away

How do you explain

To your grandmother

That you had closed your heart

And chose not to love

Chose not to seek it

Chose not to let it in

Coolness touched my chin

Turning my head

So that I met her gaze

She waited

She would have waited

From now to forever

I had no choice

But to be honest

She listened

As I emptied my soul

Into the night

She listened as the moon

Traveled west

And the stars watched

Then she whispered again

Love is love

Love is not a missing pen

That you have to look

High and low for

Love is out in the open

And if you continue

To look for it in

Nooks and crannies

You will never find it

Love is not for one

Who hides their heart

Afraid that it would

Be abused

That it would

Be broken

If you do not

Can not love

How can you be loved?

This night

As the full, shiny moon

Traversed west

A dead grandmother

Taught her granddaughter

How to love again

And as the weight

Of the Sandman’s

Sands closed my eyes

I felt coolness

On my forehead

Where my grandmother

Kissed me goodnight

I saw her twice more

In my lifetime

Once, on the eve

Of my wedding day

She taught me

How to love my husband

The second time

Was when my newborn child

Slept in the cot beside me

She taught me

How to love my child

Every time I saw her

She whispered

Love is love

By Kimolisa Mings

From “She Wanted A Love Poem”

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Hair Tips: The secrets that are not secrets after all

 

How to retain moisture and length in natural hair by Saran P King

natural hair

natural hair

  1. Clean hair and scalp: The first step to retaining moisture and ultimately retaining length, [if that is your goal], is to work with a clean canvas. The scalp and length of the strands must be kept clean in order to give it a better chance of absorbing the well needed moisture to keep your hair soft and manageable. Weather you follow the no shampoo method, also known as the girl method or you have a tweeny weeny afro (twa), at the in between stage or have waist long hair, hair must be kept clean. You may have to spend a little time figuring out what works for your hair depending on the porosity, density, length and texture by researching and experimenting. Depending on your preference and life style you may wash your hair as often as every day, every week or once a month. It is important to find out what works for you and stick to that method. It is important to note that your hair regimen may change other time depending on the length and lifestyle.
  2. Styling choice: There have been many debates whether one should adapt protective styles or not to retain length. Once again it is a matter of choice and goal set. For me, my hair prefers to be in protective styles such as buns and twists because it is prone to drying, so I rarely have my hair loose. But for others, they are able to wear their hair loose and still retain length. One thing is certain is that too much stress must not be placed on the strands and especially the edges which are easiest to break. Choose your styles based on your preference and daily activities.
  3. Tracking length: Note that although the average growth of hair is ½ inch per month, that does not mean that you will retain that amount. It is important to remember that everybody has different growth rates and you have to find out how fast your hair grows and how much of that you retain. If you are retaining much less than your hair is growing then it may seem like your hair is not growing. If that is the case, you should investigate the reasons why and put steps in place to correct or change as needed. It is also important not to compare your hair growth with others, if you are doing all that you can to preserve your strands, length will come, so don’t obsess over it [because it is pretty over rated ;-)]
  4. Health: Physical and mental health are often over looked factors in hair growth. Hair and nails are the last places on the body to receive nutrients. So it is essential that you are eating well and exercising both your body and your mind. Stress plays a big part in retaining length, whether it is positive or negative stress. You should know your stress level and find ways to manage it effectively if it is negatively affecting your health.
  5. Handle with care: Natural hair, especially naturally curly-kinky hair, is very fragile with all the twists and bends in every strand. You could be doing all of the about but if you are rough with your hair, you will be sabotaging all the hard work that you put in over the months. It is advised that if you are having a bad day or not in the mood to do your hair, just leave it alone, gel it down or wear a scarf or hat. You may cause more harm than good by venting on your strands. Leave your hair until you are better able to handle your hair with more gentle hands.
  6. Patience Patience Patience: Hair does not grow over night, so it is imperative that you exercise just a little patience. Sometimes we get caught up with seeing growth or getting to a certain length to achieve a hair style that we have been wishing to try, that we don’t enjoy the length we have at the time. Hair grows, it breaks or we cut it, then it growth again. Enjoy the stage that you are at until you get to the next stage then enjoy that stage, so in the end you are enjoying every moment without missing a beat. You may enjoy a particular length and may choose to keep it at that length and that is also fine.
  7. To trim or not to trim, that is the question!: There have been many discussions on trimming the ends of your hair or not. The reality is that, because natural hair is natural curly, fragile and prone to dryness, then wear and tear will come, especially the longer it gets. The ends of the hair, the oldest and weakest part of our hair, will, over time develop split ends and single strand knots, although split ends and knots can occur along any part of the strand, it is most commonly seen at the ends. Contrary to popular belief, you cannot repair split ends or unravel single strand knots. The only way to get rid of them, is to get rid of them, by cut them with a well sharpened barber scissors before they travel the length of the strand. The frequency of trimming or dusting the ends is entirely up to you and the state of your hair. Note though that if you are trimming your hair faster than it is growing, you will not retain length.
  8. Water is your friend: Apart from needing water to clean your hair, water is the only product that truly moisturizes your strands. All products that are not water based are just sealant and merely seals in the water that adds moisture to the hair. If your hair is not sufficiently moisturized, the hair can feel dry and brittle and look limp. On the other hand, too much water in the strands can cause the strands to become swollen, making the hair heavy also giving it a limp feeling. In addition, the hair can have a “mushy” or wet feeling. Again, when you learn your hair, you will know the quantity or water to apply to the hair and the frequency in which it should be applied. So learn your hair and find that middle ground. Once you know that amount of water your hair needs, learn what are the best products to seal in that moisture. There are some who follow the LOC method, which stands for Liquid, Oil, Cream. This method may not work for everyone so may need to experiment a bit to see what works best for your hair.
  9. Loving what you got: The unique thing about naturally kinky, curly, coily hair, is that no too heads are exactly alike. They may look and feel similar and may even require the same products but every head of hair is different. The one thing I like to tell other is that you should never compare your hair to another person’s hair. It is a plus when you learn to love your hair just the way it is and if you want a change, you can add colour, cut it and style it to suit your preference. But fall in love, fall head over heels even with your tresses, they are yours and they were perfectly made just for you. When you can appreciate what you were given you can enjoy your hair even more.
  10. Is it just hair: There have been many a discussion on the topic, so what is the answer!, is it JUST hair? It is hair, yes that is correct but for me it is a little more than hair. For me, my hair tells many stories about my heritage and ancestors, where I came from and where I am today. It reminds me that I did not create myself and there is one most powerful, all knowing who created me and I was created imperfectly perfect in his image. It makes me feel myself and alive when I am able to wear my natural hair. I also feel fortunate to even have hair, a privilege that many to not possess, so I wear my hair for them. I am more confident with my hair, the hair that I was born with and not ashamed to wear. I wear my hair for the little girls who may feel pressured to adding chemicals to their sensitive scalps because either society or their peers tell them that they are not pretty or professional enough with their hair. So more me, it is much more than hair. So wear your hair proud because its yours.

Hair Tip: The BIG secrets (about hair growth), or are they!

How to retain moisture and retain length with natural hair

 

  1. Clean hair and scalp: The first step to retaining moisture and ultimately retaining length, [if that is your goal], is to work with a clean canvas. The scalp and length of the strands must be kept clean in order to give it a better chance of absorbing the well needed moisture to keep your hair soft and manageable. Weather you follow the no shampoo method, also known as the girl method or you have a twa, at the in between stage or have waist long hair, hair must be kept clean. You may have to spend a little time figuring out what works for your hair depending on the porosity, density, length and texture by researching and experimenting. Depending on your preference and life style you may wash your hair as often as every day, every week or once a month. It is important to find out what works for you and stick to that method, although it may change from time to time.
  2. Styling choice: There have been many debates whether one should adapt protective styles or not to retain length. Once again it is a matter of choice and goal set. For me, my hair prefers to be in protective styles such as buns and twists because it is prone to drying out leading to knots and tangles, so I rarely have my hair loose. But for other, they are able to wear their hair loose and still retain length. One thing is certain is that too much stress must not be placed on the strands and especially the edges which or easier to break. Choose your styles based on your preference and daily activities.
  3. Tracking length: Note that although the average growth of hair is ½ inch per month, that does not mean that you will retain that amount. It is important to remember that everybody has different growth rates and you have to find out at what rate is your hair growing and how much of that growth you are retaining. If you are retaining much less than your hair is growing then it may seem like your hair is not growing. If that is the case, you should investigate the reasons why you are not retaining length and put steps in place to correct or change as needed. It is also important not to compare your hair growth with others, if you are doing all that you can to preserve your strands, length will come, so don’t obsess over it [because it is pretty over rated ;-)]
  4. Health: Physical and mental health are often over looked factors in hair growth. Hair and nails are the last parts on the body to receive nutrients. So it is essential that you are eating well and exercising both your body and your mind regularly. Stress plays a big part in retaining length, whether it is positive or negative stress. You should know your stress level and find ways to manage it effectively if it is having adverse effects on your health and state of mind. Remember to check with your doctor or health care provider if you have an existing condition and are planning to make drastic life style changes.
  5. Handle with care: Natural hair, especially naturally curly-kinky hair, is very fragile with all the twists and bends in every strand. You could be doing all of the above but if you are rough with you hair, you will be sabotaging the hard work that you put in over the months. It is advisable that if you are having a bad day or not in the mood to do your hair, just leave it alone, gel it down or wear a scarf for example. You may cause more harm than good by venting on your strands. Leave your hair until you able handle your hair with gentle hands.
  6. Patience Patience Patience: Hair does not grow over night, so it is imperative that you exercise a little patience. Sometimes we get caught up with seeing growth or getting to a certain length to achieve a hair style that we have been wishing to try, that we don’t enjoy the length we have at the time. Hair grows, it breaks or we cut it, then it growth again. Enjoy the stage that you are at until you get to the next stage then enjoy that stage, so in the end you are enjoying every moment without missing a beat. You may enjoy a particular length and may choose to keep it at that length and that is also an option.
  7. To trim or not to trim, that is the question!: There have been many discussions on trimming the ends of your hair. The reality is that, because natural hair is natural curly, fragile and prone to dryness, wear and tear will come, especially the longer it gets. The ends of the hair, the oldest and weakest part of our hair, will, over time develop split ends and single strand knots. Although these can occur along any part of the strand, it is most commonly seen at the ends. Contrary to popular belief, you cannot repair split ends or unravel single strand knots. The only way to get rid of them, is to get rid of them, by cut them with a well sharpened barber scissors before they travel the length of the strand. The frequency of trimming or dusting the ends, is entirely up to you and the state of your hair. Note though that if you are trimming your hair faster than it is growing, you will not retain length.

Kinky TRESSES: Meet Dr Saran P King

I’m featured by blackzulu

 

Black Zulu

Welcome to another week of Kinky TRESSES curlies! This week, we chat with young Dr Saran P King who has been natural for as long as she can remember. She fully loves and embraces all aspects of her natural tresses and shares her regimen with us.

Dr Saran P King Dr Saran P King

Tell us a bit about yourself and the life of your hair.

I have been natural all of my childhood years and most of my adult life. It was not until I went off to University did I, out of curiosity, texturize my hair on two separate occasions lasting only a year both times.

My childhood natural days were not bad; I got my hair washed and plat on the weekends by my mom. As an adult, I did my hair myself but it was only after I graduated from University did I truly know how to care for my hair; through…

View original post 995 more words

Hair Tip: Tips for transitioners (part 2)

Tip # 6
Protective styling
Protective styles are my favourite styles to wear and are the best way to wear your hair in order to deal with the two textures of hair. These styles vary from buns, updos, 2 & 3 strand twists, cornrows (rope), braids, weaves, wigs, flat twists etc. It is important to note that you must still moisturize and care for your hair when they are in these protective styles, making your transition easier.

Tip # 7
Protein Treatments
Protein treatments are aimed at strengthening the strands of your hair and should not be done more often than every 6 weeks. Although optional, they can be extremely useful if you are experiencing excessive breakage during your transition. There are many home remedies and store bought products that can be used to help make those weak strands a little stronger.

Tip # 8
Be very patient
Your hair will not grow over night even if you are not transitioning. It will take time. It is essential that you be patient when you are transitioning, especially those of you who are long term transitioning as I did (for a year). It can be frustrating waiting for all of the chemically straightened hair to be gone, but I urge you to be patient as it will be all worth it in the end.

Tip # 9
Learn to style your own hair
You don’t want to be completely dependent on a stylist or someone else to style your hair. There may not always be someone available. Learn to do styles that suit you and your personality.

Tip # 10
Enjoy your hair
Do not get caught up with the length of your hair or what are the best products to use or what others are saying. It is your hair and it was uniquely designed for you and your personality so enjoy it. Enjoy the styles you can wear. Enjoy every stage of your transition because everybody’s experience is special and different.

Hair Tip: Tips for transitioners (part 1)

You don’t have to cut your hair to become natural. It is possible to go completely natural without cutting all of your relaxed or texturized hair. You don’t have to do the big chop (bc) as others have done. Many persons transition for various reasons, for instance, they are not ready to part with their hair. They are not comfortable or not used to wearing short hair or don’t know how to style it. They are fearful about what others would say. The list goes on and on. But there is hope for persons that do not want to cut their hair, TRANSITIONING!
You can choose to do a short term transition that can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few short months. Or you can long term transition as I did for a year and there are persons who have gone up to two years allowing the chemically straightened hair to grow out gradually snipping off processed ends until it has completely grown out. Here are a few tips to help you on your journey to transitioning.

Tip # 1
Handle hair gently
Natural hair on its own is fragile by nature but the area where the natural hair ends and the chemically processed hair begin, which is called the point of demarcation is the most fragile part of the hair. If extra care is not taken when manipulating the hair, it will break at that point leaving the end of your hair ragged. This will eventually create a split end if it is not trimmed. Any time you must handle your hair, whether washing, combing or styling take all precautions not to damage the strands.

Tip # 2
Treat all of your hair as if it is completely natural
It can be very frustrating when transitioning to deal with the natural texture of your hair and the chemically straightened hair especially if you are not used to it. But the best way to deal with that is by treating both textures as if they are the same and in time you will get used to it. It will make the transition to understanding and caring for your natural hair easier rather than going cold turkey, as it were, by doing the big chop.

Tip # 3
Moisture moisture moisture
Kinky and kinky curly hair is dry by nature because, due to the coils and curls of the strands, moisture is not able to travel the length of the hair effectively on its own from the sebum that is naturally produced by our scalp. We must manually add moisture in the form of water or water based products to our hair, depending on how much moisture our hair craves. For some people, that can be as often as twice a day or as far between as once a week. But one thing is clear. Hair must be kept moisturized and it is very important to seal in that moisture with a heavier product if you are having problems retaining moisture with an oil or cream.

Tip # 4
Minimal manipulation
When transitioning, the less you manipulate your hair the better. Since the hair is so fragile, especially the point of demarcation, you want to handle hair only when necessary, that is when washing and when styling. It is advised that you wear styles that do not require much manipulation and wear it as long as you can before the next wash day.

Tip # 5
Keep hair clean
There is a misconception that dandruff or dirt “makes your hair grow”. That is quite the opposite of the truth. Hair must be kept clean so that it can absorb and retain moisture which is critical in the overall health of your hair, particularly when transitioning. If you have an underlying condition that causes build up on your scalp, please consult your physician or hair care provider to treat that problem as it may require that you use special or prescribed products and medication.

Hair Tip: “Don’t wash your hair too often because it won’t grow…”

This is another very common phrase that I still to hear to this day.

Hair must be kept clean in order to retain moisture. When your hair is dirty, there are different factors that take place. Firstly, dirt and hair products will build up on both the scalp and hair. When the scalp is dirty, just as it is with your skin, it cannot breathe Neither can it absorb the nutrients or moisture it needs. You wouldn’t go three months without bathing, so why would you want to do that to your hair. Treat your hair like you would your body. Keep it clean, handle it gently and keep it well moisturized, you will surely see the difference. Hair that is dirty looks dull and dry because the strands are covered and weighed down with dirt and/or hair products and cuticles become coated which prevent moisture from entering. Keeping hair clean ensures that the strands are not burdened with products or debris and moisture will be able to penetrate the strands, giving it a shiny and healthy grow.

There are many different types of hair cleaners that can be used. Since every head of hair is different, sometimes it can be a trial and error game finding what is best for your hair. What works for one person’s hair may not necessary work for another, even though both may have similar hair textures. There are many debates about what one should use to get hair cleaned and how often it should be cleaned. Whether it is a silicone or sulphate free shampoo, be it organic or homemade or just a conditioner to clean your hair, one thing about which we can all agree is that hair must be cleaned and be kept clean in order to retain moisture effectively and to have healthy strands.

Hair can be cleaned with a shampoo or a conditioner so create a wash routine and keep your hair clean, your hair will thank you