On fear. And hair.

I’d originally written this as a random tangent in the middle of a recent draft. But it didn’t quite fit. I was talking about the push-and-pull between wanting to create, and knowing that much of what you make is crap.

Kind of like that Ira Glass quote that my friend Lisa told me about

except I focused on my anxiety and how I recently felt ill during the process of preparing something and putting it out there.

But then I said…

To some degree I take it that being a new artist is like cultivating dreadlocks.

A wacky comparison. But hear me out…

Long story short, I’m trying to put my hair in dreads for the eleventy-billionth time. Unlike past efforts, I believe that this go-round I’ll be patient enough to see things through successful. The only frustrating part of the whole process is that there’s something a lot of people with locs go through that’s known as the “ugly” stage. It’s when your hair won’t behave. It sticks up and out and refuses to mesh together.

Basically, it looks like a hot mess.

I keep my hair up for work all the time. On off days when I try to wear it down, sometimes I like it. On other occasions, I think “WTH is this?”

That’s when I put it back up and remind myself that after 6 months* or so, my strands will realize who they belong to and start to behave.

In the meantime, I’m doing my best to remember the words of a dear friend. Days ago I was online, whining to her about my hair. She sent me a brilliant reply:

“Let it be ugly.”

Lesson?

Whether you’re making a masterpiece or trying to look good, take heart.

Don’t be afraid to make a mess.

Bad days don’t last for long. Not when you’ve got GLORY on your mind.

*My friend and loc mentor JB has estimated that my hair will take 6 months to fully loc. Next April can’t come soon enough.

One Reply to “On fear. And hair.”

  1. I love this! It’s a great analogy. Also, I should send you pictures of my (white) friend who tried to do dreads a few years ago…boy did she have to tough it out and was that a mess.

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