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22 July 2014

Palm Rolling and Twisting; Interlocking; Freeforming - My Loc Journey

(Originally written May 15, 2014)

I'm proud to say that I know longer give much thought to what other people think about my hair.  My journey to not caring truly took a full year. I went back on my word and interlocked again...and again...and again, but I did wait at least four months in between each session.  Then after one particular interlocking session around August or September 2013, my new growth slipped right out of the interlock pattern after two shampoos!  At first I was annoyed, but then I started to put things in perspective:  my hair wasn't happy.  She didn't want to be interlocked into herself; she didn't want to be palm rolled and retwisted either.  She just wanted to be left alone to mesh together as she pleased. 

I had already combined my locs once or twice before deciding to freeform, so any hairs that wanted to be together already were together by Summer 2013.  With that in mind, my new growth was staying with their respective locs, with a few random hairs in between.  I spent a few moments after conditioning my locs to separate them under the stream of water in the shower.  This technique works best for me because the water stretches and loosens my curl/coil pattern the most when soaking wet.  My hair being damp is not enough for me. 

After that, I transitioned into only running my fingers along my locs from root to tip, still under the stream of water.  This worked great as well and served as a transition to me not separating my locs at all after shampooing and conditioning.  Currently, I don't separate and I don't run my fingers down my locs.  All I do now is, while rinsing out my final conditioner, use my fingers to part my hair into semi-sections under the stream of water in the shower.  This step allows me to rinse any residue from the conditioner off my scalp and roots (which will cause my scalp to itch later in the week).  And it allows my curls/coils to go where they want, instead of me forcing them to mesh with a nearby loc.  The result:  my locs are locking at the roots all on their own.  Hence, MissCherieMarie is officially freeforming. 

I'm not even sure how long I've been freeforming.  I know it's been quite a few months now and I couldn't be happier with the results.  But I haven't been paying much attention to my hair; my main focus has been the health of my scalp.  Caring for and preventing eczema outbreaks on my scalp has been my top priority.  I plan to discuss my eczema journey in detail in another post very soon.  So, the transition to freeforming has allowed me to follow through with one of the biggest reasons I started my loc journey in the first place.  I wanted to focus on retaining length and for me personally, my scalp is to root of my growth journey tree. 

Is freeforming for everybody?  Of course not, but neither is the reverse; I didn't feel like myself with the cultivated look.  I love it on other people, but just not on me.  And I had to realize that feeling this way about my hair is okay!  To anyone out there torn between whether to fully maintain their locs, fully let them lock freely, or something in between, always know that whatever you choose is okay, simply because it's your choice.  When you choose to wear, style, and maintain your hair the way you want and the way you feel comfortable, you're choosing to be you!  And that's that's the best person for you to be. =) 

A little over a year ago, I posted a video on YouTube under MissCherieMarie101 about the different reactions I received after deciding to no longer retwist, tighten, or interlock my locs anymore.  My decision to freeform began that day, after being disappointed in the turnout of an interlocking session.  On that same day, I filmed this video.  To fully understand what was on my mind and to find out what upset me the most, watch it -- {{Mixed Feedback on Switching to Freeform Locs}}.

Thanks so much for reading!

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