Transitioning Talk: I Big Chopped… and I Didn’t Tell You

Hi all, long time no talk. Gather ’round, I’ve a story for your today. Once upon a little there was a lady that loved to do her hair…  then she transitioned for 20 months and towards the end she got tired of dealing with her hair, so she hid it away in marley twists. She fell in love with marley twists and has been wearing her like that for the last couple of months. Ok I’ll stop being a weirdo and speaking in third person…

Two weeks ago, while getting ready to reinstall my marley twists, I stared at my hair in the mirror and was just totally over my transition. I had reached 21 months + 1 week post and I was just ovvvveeerrrrr it all. I’d been cutting so much that I’d only had about 5 inches of relaxed hair left so cutting off large chunks of hair wasn’t too foreign a feeling by that time. Before I could change my mind, I picked up my hair shears, grabbed a chunk of hair and snipped.

At the end I looked at the hair in my sink and had a WHAT THE EFF DID I JUST DO?!?!?!?! moment. In my mind I heard Boyz II Men “although we’ve come to the end of the road, still I can’t let go” playing as I stared at my relaxed ends. My relaxed ends love to clump together, so that made it fairly easy to spot the straighter strands but I made sure I worked in smallish chunks.

Once I’d finished, I may or may not have pranced around my entire apartment saying “OMG this transition is over!”

One thing is for sure, my texture is not uniform.

 

 

With conditioner + oil

 

WHY DID I TRANSITION TO NATURAL?

I made the decision to transition to natural back in April of last year to support my mother who is natural, but not a fan of her natural hair. My mom had the firm belief that only relaxed hair could grow long, and seeing my long, relaxed hair only solidified that idea. To help her see that she could do it and having relaxed hair does not equal long hair, I decided to stash my jar or ORS lye in my closet and transition. You can check out my full post on my decision to transition here.

HOW LONG DID I TRANSITION?

21 months + 1 week.

WHY DID I TRANSITION LONG-TERM?

By the time I made up my mind about going natural, I was already deep into a relaxer stretch. Since the thought of cutting off my then waist-length made my head spin, transitioning long term was on my only option really.

WHY DID I KEEP IT A SECRET?

Well, it wasn’t intentional. I promise! Right after big chopping I re-did my marley twists and had them in for two straight weeks. With my hair tucked away it was easy to forget that I had actually ended my transition; out of sight, out of mind. I think tucking away my hair right after chopped actually helped me cope with the shock factor. Right after chopping I had no idea what to do with my hair. I probably would’ve cried out of frustration had I not tucked it away.

HOW DO I FEEL ABOUT IT?

The OMGdfdkjfidgjdigj?!?!?!?! feeling has worn off and I love it. I miss the way my hair used to be but it’s moreso I miss the length and not fact that it was relaxed. The length will return, I just have to be patient. Which I’m not right now, my mindset is totally on grow, grow, grow. My blog name is totally relevant again lol.

I took my twists out a couple days ago and fell in love with my hair. I definitely had a moment where I looked in the mirror and thought “is that me????” To put my reaction is perspective: my mother relaxed my hair when I was very little. Before this transition I had no memory of what my natural texture looked it. I had done very few braid outs on my relaxed hair and none of them had the level of texture the picture below has, so seeing my hair like this was definitely a shocker.

This is the result of an unintentional twist out, after taking out my marley braids I didn’t feel like washing my hair. See, told you I’ve gotten lazy.

What surprised me the most is how much my grandmother likes my natural hair. She’s never really been a fan of me taking care of my hair on my own… even after growing to waist length and proving I could care for my hair on my own, whenever I visited her she’d still manage to tell me that I should go straighten my hair (because my texlaxed hair wasn’t straight enough apparently) and that I should let a “professional” do it or else my hair was going to break off. When my granny called my twist out beautiful, I just about fainted.

I hope wearing my hair out prompts my mother to want to wear her hair out as well. She still hasn’t but I’m going to try my best to get her comfortable with the thought.

 

WILL I EVER GO BACK TO RELAXING MY HAIR?

Maybe, maybe not. I’m still all for healthy relaxed hair so I definitely wouldn’t be opposed to relaxing my hair again if that’s what I wanted to do. My answer right this moment would be ‘no,’ but only because I just finished a super long transition and the thought of going through another long term transition just makes me cringe.

New hair, new hair journey, but still the same on old Jen. For my relaxed readers, I’m not abandoning you. I will still continue to share relaxed hair tips. The fun apart about starting a new journey? I get to play around and try out a bunch of new products! The product junkie in me lives again 🙂

61 Comments

  1. I think its a nice thing you did to sipport your mom by keeping a natural hair , am the only one with a chemically treated hair amongst my sisters and my mom , i am 4 months into my relaxer stretch and since relocating to a colder region amd suffering really huge set backs regarding my hair i was contemplating going natural ,after readimg this i can not tell you how inspired i am . Congratulations and your hair still looks as healthy as ever.

    http://www.stylenbeautylounge.com

  2. I LOOOOOOOOOOOOVE it omg !!!
    And it's so funny because you actually put words on what I was feeling when I cut everything !!
    The WHAT THE EFF DID I JUST DO feelings…. I've had it for about a week but then I was so happy with my texture !!
    I also found out that a lot of products I was using when I was transitioning was no longer effective on "natural only" hair so I had to start looking for other products. I still haven't really found the IT products so far, but I am working on it.

    Once again!! I'm happy you're natural!
    If you ever need to come to Paris, You should come to my house!!

  3. WOWOWOWOWOWOWOWOWOWOOW! wasnt expecting this! Your hair looks absolutely gorgeous! I am a long time lurker of your site and I have to say that I am in love with both your natural and relaxed hair! You look radiant by the way 🙂

  4. My hair is similar. Loads of different curl patterns. You look awesome though and your skin….. gorgeous

  5. Congratulations with your hair journey! I loved how you grew it out so long and kept it healthy. Now you've done a BC and going to start the journey again! Hope for it to be a smooth path and little to no set-backs.

    Have a happy journey!

  6. Looks great!! Congrats on making transitioning look effortless!!

    1. Author

      Thanks! It didn't feel effortless at times lol!

  7. Omg!! I am almost overcome! Lol! Your natural hair looks beautiful and very feminine!!
    I am a few months over 2 years and enjoying learning to style my hair again. I plan to BC in December. The transition has been easy but I am steadily becoming more curious to see my natural hair, unfettered by my relaxed ends…so we will see if I make it to December.
    If you decide to try a new product, would you consider Shea Moisture's Manuka honey hair masque? can I please live through you? The line isnt available in Europe :'(.
    How are the exams going? As soon as thats been taking care of I look forward to following the exciting new phase in your hair journey.

    1. Author

      Kudos to reaching AND passing the 2 year mark!!! I tried Shea Moisture's Manuka honey hair masque a couple weeks ago and my hair didn't seem to like it :/ I'm going to try again after clarifying first, I'm hoping that the lackluster results were due to lingering product residue/build up from previous products.

  8. You are so so gorgeaous! your hair is pretty, thick and beautiful. I hope I will be able to achieve this same good transition as u did on my own head. xxx

    1. Author

      Aww thank you! Good luck on your transition!

  9. I love it so much Jen! Congrats on ending your transition. Beautiful x

  10. Omigosh Jen, Yay you! You look different and amaxing with your natural hair. Very carefree and beautiful.
    I have tendrils of relaxed hair hanging on and I totally get the feeling. Wish I could just snip off but my head is spinning too and I'm waiting for 24 months

    1. Author

      Thank you!! ♥ How many months post are you now?

  11. Congrats your hair looks gorgeous. Love your twist out. Looking forward to seeing more wash days and product reviews, etc.

  12. Ooohhh. I knew that "I haven't deep conditioned in 2 weeks" pic" on fb looked suspect ?… But I didn't think much about it.
    Congrats on the big BC! And i look even more forward to this continuous and evolving journey.

  13. It really does look awesome. I can very much imagine that feeling of "OK, I'm done!" when you picked up the shears. Looking forward to following you on this new journey, and thanks for not abandoning the rest of us, lol.

    1. Author

      Thanks Phoenix, thank you for your continued support!

    1. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      And this unintentional twist out is EVERRRRRYYY thing! I adore that you choose to transition YOUR way! Kudos chica!

      KLP @ SavingOurStrands

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