How Surviving Cancer Helped Me Learn to Love My Curls

Do you love your hair? If you are a woman, chances are you’ve had more than one battle with your locks. We all have a hair story, each as unique and individual as our lives.

My step sister who was much older and whose hair was as straight and as jet black as our father’s would twirl one of my auburn curls in her finger and ask me,

“Can I have this curl?” I would giggle then pull my hair away – she made me feel as though I owned something really special.

I grew up with curly hair, and from when I was a baby into my years as a toddler, my curly hair was my signature.

My beautiful mother, with her light, tight, bouncy curls was a stunner. She would wear her curls natural,  half up, half down most days, but she always looked gorgeous. I admired her beautiful mane and secretly hoped that my hair would be just like hers someday.

But then as I grew older and my hair grew longer, the weight of my hair left me with nothing more than a couple waves.

When I was 10, my mother grew tired of taking care of my thick, wavy hair and cut it shoulder-length to make it more manageable. She thought she was doing me a favour, but what really happened was that for the first time I started to really dislike my hair.

With the weight gone, my hair seemed as if it wanted to be curly again, but couldn’t and instead I was left with frizzy hair with no clear shape. This became the period of my life known as my daily battle with my hair. Every morning, I would take a vengeful straightener to my hair. Hearing the sizzling sound that the straightener emitted as it met my slightly damp hair made me feel victorious as it meant that I had been successful at killing the “ugly.”

Thankfully in high school I discovered layering, and fell in love with my hair all over again. My curls started to come back and I began to let my hair grow again.

Even after cancer my never really came back to it’s glorious self. I came to terms with the fact that it would never be as thick as it once was, or never be as curly as my mother’s, but when I find a perfectly formed curl falling across my forehead, I always think of my sister’s words and smile, knowing that I really do own something special.’

Then college came along, and soon after I became ill. My thyroid condition caused my hair to fall out and I would cry in the shower as I ran my hands through my hair and found the long curly strands still in my hands.

These days I let my hair do whatever it wants, I’ve found that it’s better that way.

Now I nourish and moisturise with the hope that one day my curls will come back to their full glory again, but mostly I just try to love my hair no matter what.

Why? Because someday I hope to pass it on to my daughter and I want her to love her hair as much as my mother taught me to love mine.

Watch the inspiring ‘Love Your Curls’ video below, and share with us your hair story:

Image Source: YouTube/Beyoncé

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