Ethnic Hair Conditioning 101

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I remember when Desta was a year old, I was convinced she’d never have hair!It was so short, balding in spots and super dry.   We moved to Florida and the humidity was the hair friend!

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Since coming back to Colorado Springs, I’ve been on an eternal quest to help Desta’s hair keep growing and stay hydrated.  That is not an easy feat in this super dry climate!

I have watched videos, purchased hundreds of dollars of hair products, done braids, corn rows, turbans, you name it!  Finally, three months ago I was so frustrated with the price of hair product and how her hair seemed to have stopped growing.  I was online and found a recipe for hair treatment.  I figured, why not!  It was the best gamble I took so far in the hair department.

Now that we’ve been doing it three months and I KNOW it works, I thought I’d share it with you all!

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Each week, usually a Saturday or Sunday morning, I make a paste and slather it on her hair.  Actually, it’s a bit more of a science than that.  I section her hair, starting at the ends of her hair and then moving down to her scalp, I apply about a quarter size portion of the conditioning treatment.

The paste is comprised of avocado oil, olive oil, rosemary oil and Carol’s Daughter conditioner.  I usually do 1/4 cup of each oil, 1/2 cup of the conditioner and about 6 drops of the rosemary.  I ran out of my Young Living oil but that is my preference for adding to her hair solution.

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After all the sections are covered in the hair product, I twist out the hair.  Final step before Saran wrap is applying all extra hair product to the ends of the hair.

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We wind saran wrap around Desta’s head – about four large sheets – and she goes about her business for about 2 hours.  (All recipes have said use moist heat or warm towels. Have you tried to keep a warm towel on an active 7 year old’s head?  Also, all the moist heat options come with a $60+ price tag.  I wasn’t ready to commit to that until I KNEW this would work.)

We rinse and then I make a small cup of apple cider vinegar (about 1/2 cup) with water (around 1/2 cup).  After her conditioning treatment is rinsed out, I pout the vinegar solution on her head, rubbing her scalp. This helps remove the layer of build up on her scalp that makes her itch non stop.

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Once it’s all rinsed out, style as normal.

img_5383Desta’s hair is super soft since we’ve started doing this.  She rarely complains about her head itching.  Also, it’s become a fun tradition most weeks – one where I can pamper her and we get a lot of hand to hair touch – an important part of building those connecting neurotransmitters.

Revolved Half Moon Epiphany

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The weatherman has been wrong, multiple times in the past few days.  I’m trying hard to not be angry when I see 50 degrees for a week in the forecast only to wake up to snow and teen temperatures.  How much school do tv weather people attend to predict the temps for us common people?

The weather really influences my attitude.  Does that happen to you?  I wake up to dark cold skies, head to the gym and resolve during yoga to be calm.  Only thing is, when I leave the gym I’m surrounded by incompetent drivers.  Again, who teaches kids to drive these days?  Maybe it’s just me but when I drive on Powers, I’m surrounded by drivers who believe a RED light means GO.

So I start to spiral down the negativity ladder.  Nothing quite seems to work out how I planned it to. My clean neat plans are constantly torn up and shot to hell.  I drive MILES each day, working hard to remember the snacks, the homework, the soccer bags, water bottles and please, can you just keep the car clean for one day?  Please?

By the time I get home, I often find myself in a full on mood meltdown.  I want to reach for chocolate and wine but those two items can no longer be found in our home thanks to a new year’s resolution for clean eating.  I attempt to find comfort in tv but there is honestly nothing really worth to watch.  I head to my phone, finger flicking through screens of Facebook which just angers me as I read post after post about this crazy world we are living in now.  And I take it out on my kids, on my family, on my dog.  I’m short-tempered, short fused and frustrated.

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At my 3:15 pm Sunday yoga class this past week, I had an epiphany.  I was attempting a revolved half moon posture – not well mind you.  My balance was ALL OFF and I was getting so frustrated with myself.  In that minute, I simple stopped trying. I just focused my eyes on one spot of the wood floor and breathed.  The pose happened because I wasn’t trying any more.  I let go of all the expectations of how I looked, instead I just breathed.

My epiphany? I need to let go of all the expectations and thoughts of what I SHOULD be doing.  I have to simply live in the moment and thought, working hard to face and do the thing that is right before me.  No longer can I keep living in this world of shoulds and have to’s and expectation and noise.

Instead of letting all the busy around me distract me, I have been working on living the moment at hand.  It’s a whole heck of a lot of hard work.  It’s much easier to pull up the phone, scroll through other people’s lives and let bad drivers make you go nutso.

Practically what does this look like for me?

It’s choosing to celebrate a child’s hard work by buying a $4 gluten-free cupcake from his favorite bakery.  It’s putting away my 7-year-old’s laundry EVERY SINGLE DAY because that’s a task she is not able to do right now.  There are more important tasks we are working on right now.

It’s calling up my 15-year-old and offering to drive her to Young Life’s grilled cheese Thursdays AS well as bringing her the soccer bag she forgot.  It’s intentionally sitting down and sending my husband, whose love language is WORDS of AFFIRMATION, a long email about the things I’ve noticed about him.  It’s making fish tacos when I just want to serve popcorn.  It’s buying a few special “just because gifts” for a little 7 year old whose love language is GIFT GIVING.

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I’ve been reading more, journalling more, meditating more, allowing thoughts to sit and swirl in my mind.  I believe we are not to live distracted lives.  Blocking out noise can be done by simple releasing it and living in the moment.