my family is lower-to middle-middle class, and we live in a middle-middle to upper-middle class, mostly white suburbian small town in the "conservative state," otherwise known as connecticut.
i have a job. the typical costumer at this job would be a late-twenty to early thirty-something year old new mother. the town in which i live, as well as the surrounding towns, mainly attract newly weds who want to settle down and begin families, raise their kids in a "nice" place.
i get a lot of strange looks from time to time concerning my hair. people around here aren't used to someone else not believing in what they believe. ie: cathlicism, being a republican, going to college, etc.
i am proud of my dreads because they visually express my non-conformist personality. my co-workers sometimes ask me why i dreaded my hair. they tease me and tell me i'm just going through my "rebel stage." (man, if this is a stage, it's a really long one, considering i wasn't born with the same outlook on life as everybody else around here.)
what can i say. around here, i am NOT in my element.
since you're probably wondering why i dreaded my hair, i'll tell you.
i was hesitant at first. ("at first" being about a year and a half ago.) i loved looking at them, and i loved how energetic and natural they were. i admired them from afar on people, too intimidated by the people wearing them. by the way they looked to me, only a special type of person wore dreads. dreads added a unique aura to the soul. dreadlocks, to me were magic.
a good friend of mine in school took notice of my interest and taught me the roots of dreadlocks. she taught me the history and the meaning. she taught me what the rastas believe in. she told me about a west indian celebration held in boston.
i fell in love with the concept. i'm still in love with the concept. my love for dreads bloomed full, and my desire for them burned. but i am a white girl. i thought being a white girl with dreadlocks seemed sort of contradictory.
months passed and my desire for locking my hair never faded. what made me just forget my doubts and lock up was this: i decided the color of my skin didn't matter. i decided that if i believe something so strong, then it can't be wrong to express that feeling. i decided that the intentions in my heart where more important than the color of my skin.
the reason i have dreadlocks is because i wish to see all races as one. i wish to see everybody love each other. i wish to see no superiority based on skin pigment or nationality or background. i wish for congregation and (maybe this sounds lame and cliche) peace and harmony among our fellow human.
yes, i realize that black people as well as white people smirk at me or laugh at me or give me dirty looks, wondering why this suburbanite white bitch is wearing traditional african hair. i've learned not to let it bother me. i stick to my beliefs, whether or not some people know they exist in my heart. my hair is meant to be my tell-tale sign.
i do love my hair, if i may say so.....