Yesterday was my first day back to work with my TWA (teeny weeny afro). I was a bit nervous because as one of a few Black professors on a predominantly White campus, I stand out. In the past, my dreadlocks drew quite colorful commentary and was one of my distinguishing traits. I was nervous because I knew that my hair would draw comments. Most of my colleagues were quite gracious although, I had my share of shocked responses complete with “WHAT DID YOU DO?!!”.
I am so proud of myself for not letting others’ responses dictate how I feel about myself. Of course, I want to be perceived as an attractive person. Yet, when I look in the mirror that is what I see. I am learning to detach opinion of self from opinions of others. Others’ opinions do indeed matter but they are not central to my identity. Believe me, as a self-professed people-pleaser, this is a HUGE step for me.
We’ll see how I do the first day of classes when I stand before a hundred plus students! 🙂
NOTE: The video of my Big Chop is still being edited but I will post it and still pictures as soon as they are available. Please stay tuned, comment and pass the blog along to others. Thanks! Tina