Week 3: Learning stuff already!
August 21st marked my 3rd week of locking up! It has been an interesting process. As I sat back yesterday evening to reflect my newest transition in life, I am in awe with what dreadlock has come to symbolize for me at this point.Lessons I have learned so far:Patience:In the world we live in these days, one gets too used to having things done right away. Technology brings us communication within a blink of an eye, dinner can be ready in as little as 3 minutes, and traveling long distances can be done in a matter of hours (if not less). So here I am, trying to develop dreadlocks that will last my a long time and even though they are starting to bud, the journey is still a while to come. I have learned to treasure each day more and pay attention to little changes here and there. Beautiful things come about with time. My baby dreads has taught me to slow down a little, make note of how things transition themselves and absorb each day with a renewed love for life.Expectations:A valuable lesson I encountered a week ago is the concept of expectations. Expecting things to be a certain way only to be disappointed. Just when I thought all my dreads where locking up equally, several of them came apart and caused me to suffer a bit. This is very true in almost every aspect of our lives. We tend to set expectations of how things will and should be. But when the time comes, as we see it, what we see or experience often times has us feeling gipped. Especially when we put forth a lot of effort and mental work to develop a moment, such as planning a party or even something as trivial as making a desert, it doesn't come out as to how we envision it to be. Perhaps with the media the way it is, we get sucked into the illusion of how things "ought to be". Now, I am just letting my dreads lock up how they will. They may not be picture perfect, but they are mine and each dreads are to be cherished.Attachment:Like anything that has a personal ripple of effect in our lives, we tend to be attached to things emotionally on any level. We get attached to a pet, a car, a lover or even a particular sports team. I found myself becoming overly careful with my hair dreading that I hesitate to touch it too much with fear that I will cause it to unravel. Ridiculous isn't it? I mean, it's only hair, who cares. There are countless beings in the world suffering and I am focused on my hair?!?!? At least I came to that awakening so early on. I am practicing more about "letting go" in the sense that all things come and go and I have no control over it. Hell, I may become bald within the next 10 years, so I have to accept that. With that said, I also have to realize that life just flows. Simply put. It's a profound awakening I think and I look forward to practicing that concept.Growth and stages:Another thing I have come to ponder is the journey of growth and stages of my dreadlock ordeal. I come to appreciate what dreadlocks symbolizes throughout the world, specifically to Hindu yogis and Rastifarians. Most would say that dreadlocks, being a symbol of nature and separation of vanity, are reserved for those that have an inner desire to experience what it means to be pure. I don't mean it in a sense that a person shouldn't be drinking coffee or eating Dunkin-Donuts because of the unnatural state of it (and I am still attached to those things HA!) but more to imply a state of mental clarity. Truth. So what has my dreadlock journey done to instill such a concept? There are three stages of locking and I am at the very beginning; the baby stage. Like a baby, I am learning to deal with the locking process and all that it entails both physically and mentally. Unless you've ever gone natural to grow dreads, I fear this may be lost on your part. It truly is a lot of work to separate the dreads from congo-ing (two or more locks growing together to make one huge dread), making sure the ends of each dreads are not drying out, and lastly, avoiding anything that would condition the hair and scalp which is an enemy to the locking process. I look forward to the teen stage and anyone that knows teens, can get a good idea of the process that is like with hair. Just a rebellious mess of knots, loose hairs and stubborn interlocking.It has been so far a great journey for me. While I know the general masses would find this to be such a ridiculous waste of time to either grow dreadlocks or simply to parallel the lessons one can learn, it is MY journey and one that has spiritual meaning for me. If it makes me a better person, then I'll have all that much more power to me!