A couple weeks ago, one of my yoga students was asking me about my hair… why I did it, how long I’d had them, etc. She laughed at how often I kept using the word, “journey”. But I absolutely couldn’t help it. Dreadlocks are a journey. There’s no better word to describe them. And I don’t think it’s a coincidence at all that I decided to do them the same year that I messed up my shoulder, making any sort of maintenance on them nearly impossible, forcing me to go the route of “neglect” and just let go and let them be. They represent my life – and my year – well. Sort of a mess, but with the promise of something beautiful underneath.
Looking back on my three month update cracks me up. I was waxing poetic about embracing the chaos and learning to love the lumps and loops… which absolutely still holds true… but I didn’t yet know what it was I was talking about. At three months, they were still organized and relatively straight and tidy. Because they weren’t dreads yet. They hadn’t even begun to actually lock up and become what they would eventually be. They were still just babies, not much more than potential dreads:
Now, at one year, I feel like I’m really getting it. And I also recognize, unequivocally, that I’m very much at the beginning of this journey. They’re just now really starting to lock up. They are crazy. Some are fat. Some are thin. Some are scrunched up to four inches, some are long. Some have huge bumps, others have huge loops. Some are all twisted, some are straight. Some have beads that are now physically impossible to get out. One apparently split into two at one point, and is now a giant two pronged fork. Each one is different.
Each one tells its own story.
About five months ago, I had a moment of freak-out and almost combed them out. I’m so glad I didn’t. My dread story isn’t done yet. It’s only just begun. And now I just… wait. And watch. And continue to let them grow and mature and be. While I continue to grow and mature and be right beside them.