True Power

True Power

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Interview with Nanci Maynard

The Low Down On Dreadlocks
By: Nanci Maynard aka
The Klingon Princess aka Tyr's Wife


I've been contemplating doing this for a while. After all, I've had dreadlocks for going on ten years now. I first had my dreadlocks done on July 4, 2001.

I live in New York City and I saw a small shop advertised in my neighborhood newspaper. This was convenient because it was within walking distance from me. It was only about three blocks away from where I lived It took me all of ten minutes to get there. Surprisingly the shop was open on a major holiday.

The shop was a small one person operation, run by a lady named Ajasa Olemajoke.

Why did I decide to get dreadlocks? It was NOT because I'd become too lazy to comb my hair! The reason was I suffer from severe migraines and I COULD NOT comb my hair without inflicting severe pain on myself just from combing my hair.

I was tired of wearing it very short, which I did for many years. Because of this I was often mistaken for a boy or a young man or gay. Also my ultra traditionalist West Indian Mom kept getting on my case to “grow and do something with my hair”!

To my Mom doing something with my hair meant either "straightening it or having it permed". Ugh!!

Well, I couldn't stand for my hair to be braided, because some folks braided it too damned tight! And I was “tender headed", which means I had a very sensitive scalp, and it was even worse because of the migraines. So, dreadlocks were the next option.

When I went to her shop, I'd expected Ajasa to cut my hair down to nubs and start “baby locks”. That's what happened to several of my friends who had gotten locks. I had medium length hair, but, she refused to cut it. She washed and proceeded to dread my hair by using beeswax and a rat tailed comb. Remember those?

From start to end when she washed, conditioned, twisted, and sat me [under] the hood dryer, it took about two hours for Ajasa to complete the process. And no, it did not hurt.

Before I left, I was cautioned not to let my hair get wet or wash it, until the next time we met, six weeks later.

At first, like when I first started wearing contacts, no one recognized me. If I had a very poor self image, I would've been insulted, but I wasn't.

Of course, I got the questions, like “Why'd you do THAT to your hair? Why didn't you get braids? You have such a nice quality hair, why would you do THAT to it? Why didn't you do the perm?”

To answer the last question, I had a very bad experience with the perm. Years ago, I was talked into having my hair permed one day, went home, woke up the next day and all of my hair was on the pillow! You can best believe, NO MORE PERMS FOR ME!

The ultimate question was: “Can you take them out?”. I have yet to find a diplomatic way to say “No, you have to cut them all off, and start growing your hair all over again.” When I say that, most folks wince and rock back like I've given them a left hook. . . . .

After having my hair “locked” up, I went back to Ajasa's about six times. About once a month, then I struck out on my own. It was costing me way too much money to have my hair done.

Each time I went to see her, it would cost me $100.00. Plus, I usually gave her a twenty dollar tip. I quickly learned how to wash and twist my own locks and I've been doing it ever since.

Now, I have my own established methods. First, I buy my shampoo and conditioner on sale for around a dollar a bottle, sometimes less if I catch a really hot sale. I usually buy White Rain or VO5. Why? Because it usually takes an entire 15oz bottle to properly wash my mane! Conditioner, I use about a half to three quarters of a bottle each time. So, you can see where just buying shampoo can cost me a good piece of money if I wasn't thrifty. Okay. . . .cheap . . . . . LOL!

After trying several brands of beeswax, I finally settled on ”Murray's“ pure and natural Australian Beeswax, to twist and hold my locks. I also use “Nature's Blessings” Hair Pomade to oil my scalp on a regular basis. We “sisters” must oil our scalp, ya know. . . . Dreads do not look good with dandruff!
Before I sleep I put my hair up in a bun and tie it up in a black stretchy cloth, ( bigger than a "doo rag" ) in order to keep my locks neat and free from lint.

Twisting dreadlocks is a simple process. While they are wet ( I've found that dreads lock best if twisted when wet - yes, I've tried it dry - don't work), you dab some beeswax on the unlocked section of each lock closest to the scalp, and twist counterclockwise. You do this for each and every lock on your head ( if you have one hundred, then you do it one hundred times, etc ), twisting them all in the SAME DIRECTION! This is where the tediousness comes in.

This is also where I don't blame men for abruptly cutting their locks off and opting for either short hair, or braids. In my personal opinion ( I know, who be me? ), a black man looks so very sexy with dreadlocks when they are well-kept!. But, the key words are WELL KEPT! When they start looking like crap, I second the emotion to cut them off, YESTERDAY!

The one well-known male who had dreadlocks and looked drop dead stunning and scrumptious in them was "Keith Hamilton Cobb"! Who dat? He played Tyr Anasazi, on “Andromeda”. Like I tell everyone. Go to Photo Bucket or Google him! Careful, your eyes may fall out!

Back to the subject at hand . . . . . .

Since I've had my hair locked, I've personally cut my hair a total of five times. Having your hair dreadlocks really make one's hair grow like crazy. Why? Because you're not ripping your hair out with a comb or brush, and you're not burning it out with harsh and caustic chemicals.

I usually cut it down from waist length, to shoulder length. I hate doing that, because I feel like I'm cutting off a piece of myself. And I am. Sometimes I cry and suffer intense remorse after doing it. I know, what a wuss am I.

I cut it due to three reasons: 1) It's summer time and my dreadlocks get very hot and very heavy. This is especially for me because I am very physically active. I like to work out and run and I sweat like crazy. 2) Sweaty hair, tends to smell and not too pleasant. My personal theory: If I can smell it, others can too. Which means more washing and maintenance more often. 3) It gets long enough for me to sit on. Now, that is the ultimate last straw!

It's bad enough that when I get on a bus, a baby would reach out and give my locks a good yank! Yep! I've had that happen! I've also had adults do that too! I guess they wanted to know if my hair was real. But, that hurts!

To me, it is a big responsibility to have dreadlocks. I make sure I take care of my locks on a regular basis. Since I don't have the money to go to a shop, I do everything myself. I wash, I towel, I twist, I blow dry or air dry if the weather is warm.

I consider taking care of my hair, my “me” time. I twist my locks while listening to music or the radio. It is relaxing and stress relieving. Usually after I finish twisting my hair, I sleep like a baby.

I've recently reached an impasse where it comes to my “mane”. Since I'm getting older ( aren't we all? ), my hair is turning gray and white in many places. I'm seriously contemplating cutting it way down and re-growing my locks to let them grow back in gray.

Why? Because I don't like two-toned hair, and I REFUSE to “dye” it as some of my friends have suggested. They have not a clue how much hair dye it would take to accomplish that task, and how expensive it would be to maintain that farce. Plus, I no longer put harsh chemicals in my hair.

Whatever my decision is, I am definitely KEEPING my dreadlocks!

You can check out this wonderful lady's portfolio at: http://electladynancy@writing.com

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Birth Order Part 3

THE LAST BORN

The youngest children of the family are typically the outgoing charmers, the personable manipulators. They are also affectionate, uncomplicated, and sometimes a little absentminded. Their approach to life is to get laughs, smiles, and shakes of the head. A typical characteristic of the last born is that they are more carefree, vivacious. They are a real 'people person' who is usually popular in spite of or because of their clownining antics.

Last borns carry the curse of not being taken very seriously by their families or by the world at large. The last born has a burning desire to make an important contribution to the world.

TIPS FOR THE LAST BORNS

1. Accept responsibility for yourself, grow up.
2. Many last borns are messy and need to learn how to pick up after themselves.
3. Although last borns are people persons, they sometimes struggle with self-centeredness and need to offer to help others, follow through with the help and to do it without fanfare.
4. Beware of being too independent. Work on admitting your faults and don't blame others for your situation when you know you're the one who really caused it.
5. Always be aware of your gift to be funny, charming, and persuasive.
6. If you love the limelight, be advised that other people like a little of it for themselves now and then.
7. Before marriage, try dating other first borns, you may find them the most compatible.

By the time the last child arrives, mom and dad are not that easy to impress. They have had all of the firsts before such as the first crawl, the first tooth, the first steps and probably wonder why it is taking the last born so long to get all of the firsts over with. Even toilet training becomes a rush job.

The baby of the family knows they are behind the others in all activities and functions. So the only thing to do about it is to laugh or make others laugh.

When my last child was born I admit I was in a hurry for her to hold her own bottle, to learn to walk and watch t.v. more on her own. My last child happened to be the most demanding child and took her time in all things. But, when she is in a room there is electric sunshine. She is the most social of all of my children and she does get away with so much. She wore makeup before she was sixteen--a rule all the other girls had to go through. A smile from her changes things.

I myself, have been accused of hoarding the spotlight. It is not something that I try to do, but I guess it is something that I do--do. I consider myself spoiled and would not have it any other way. Not spoiled by my parents but by my husband.

As a young girl I set my wedding date in November. My birthday is in October, November would be my anniversary, then Christmas, New Years, and Valentine's Day---Presents for me non-stop. Guess what? My anniversary is in November.

I hope you have enjoyed looking at the characteristics of the birth order. If you want to read more on the topic check out "The Birth Order Book" by Dr. Kevin Leman who is a proud last born child. The book also tells about how birth order affects marriages.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Birth Order Part 2

Parenting is not an exact science. There is not a manual handed out in the delivery room. Most of us do what our parents did. While watching a documentary on the cannibal serial killer, Jeffery Daumer, his mother was very agitated at the idea of others blaming her parenting skills for her sons actions. Did I say parenting is difficult? We should never stop trying to improve our parenting skills, we owe it to our children. Every little insight in this endeavor of being mom and dad should be weighed for its value in helping your child to grow up happy and healthy.

The MIDDLE CHILD, better described as the "iffy" child is hard to pin down.

It can be said of the middle child that they were either born too late or too early. They fall into that no man's land of not being the first-born, the star of the family in which mom and dad lavish attention on them over the meagerest of accomplishments. They were not the baby, the last of the line, no more babies for mom and dad so they cherish the last one. Too late to get privileges and special treatment of the first-born and too early to benefit from the relaxed rules of discipline most of the last born enjoy.

There is not an easy list of personality traits to attach to the middle child because they are most directly influenced by the first born child. This continues to role down hill. The third child will be influenced by the second child and so forth until you reach the last child of the family (who is a different can of worms).

The middle child looks above and sizes up the older sibling. If he or she senses he can compete with the older sibling, they may do so. But if the older sibling is stronger, smarter, etc., the second born typically shoots of in another direction, making their known personality traits difficult to nail down; thus they are "iffy." So the second born may become a pleaser or an antagonize, a victim or a martyr, or a manipulator or a controller. Any of these options are up for grabs, but one thing you can be sure of is that the second born will play off of the first-born. EXAMPLE: the first born child may be perfectly compliant and the second born will be a handful.

It is not unusual for the middle child to have more friends as a substitute family in which they find the attention they feel is lacking within the family structure. Friends become very important to middle children. The middle child is usually the child who leaves home the quickest and is more of a free spirit giving themselves permission to reject the family's do's and don'ts at least in part. They may become mentors or even at times be manipulative. Because they could not have mom and dad all to themselves and get their way, they learn how to negotiate and compromise.

HOW THE MIDDLE CHILD CAN STAND THEIR GROUND

1. Middle children are the most sensitive of all the children and do not confide in many people. This can pose a problem in marriage more so than in everyday life. Learn to share your opinions and ideas with others.
2. Less likely to seek out services from helping professionals such as psychologists, counselors, or ministers (first-born engineers and doctors lead in seeking out help, followed by last-born). Don't be so tough and independent until you will not seek out what you need.
3. Running with the "pack" is fine when a choice group of people with values, morals, ethics is the criteria for your group of friends. Don't spread yourself too thin with all of your friends.
4. Middle children are the kings and queens of monogamy. Enough said. Good for you.
5. You are prone to embarrassment and reluctant to admit it. Everyone makes mistakes and embarrassment is part of life.

I am a mother of a middle child and we, as a family, Mom, Dad, and other siblings, put forth effort from day one to ensure that our middle child did not get lost in the shuffle or get ignored. We call her "middle baby" from time to time and joke about how she is invisible and forgotten. We can joke about it because we made sure she was neither invisible nor forgotten.

So, does she have any of the "iffy" characteristics of the middle child? You bet! She is the peace maker and negotiator of the family; we call her the 'glue.' She bridges everything between everyone in the house. Did she sum up her big sis? Yes she did. She picked up her older sister's HOBBY of drawing and will be entering college to major in Graphic Design while her older sister will graduate medical school. They bonded (eight years difference) while drawing and it is their special thing and the student surpassed the teacher in their case. She hates being embarrassed on an almost psychotic level. We had to keep an eye on her when she was young because she would be too embarrassed to tell us if she fell and hurt herself. We have been working on the embarrassment issue for years.

She is not a social butterfly though, her two sisters are her best friends as she gets older her circle may expand; who knows. All in all I believe I had a typical middle child, if anything the family overcompensated for our middle baby, which I'm sure there are some ramifications for by some other psychologist.

So, I have discussed the first-born and the middle child. My group will be next: THE LAST CHILD

Monday, February 1, 2010

Birth Order Part 1


Most people will try anything to get an upper hand on life. Some resort to astrology to find out how they can better be in control of an unknowable day. Control has been the issue for man throughout history; trying to figure out how to live in a chaotic world. Man perfected the invention of gods that could be coaxed by spells and rituals into doing favorable deeds for him, making him feel more secure and in control. To this unobtainable goal of gaining control of life comes one more tool: understanding one's birth order. I happen to be the "baby" of the family and find the attributes given to "babies" of the family suit me perfectly. I want to share what the scientist have to say about the first born, middle, and baby child of families in three installments.

OLDEST CHILD:

The two factors that owe personality traits to first-born children are: Mom and Dad.
Brand new parents tend to be overprotective, anxious, tentative, and inconsistent on one side and strict in discipline, demanding, always pushing and encouraging more and better performance on the other side. The "first" child is the guinea pig as Mom and Dad try to learn the fine art of parenting.

For the first-born, life is real and life is earnest. He or she is not for surprises, they prefer to know what's happening and when it is going to happen.

They tend to get more attention and notoriety than any other sibling. Anything a first-born child does is a big deal as far as Mom and Dad and other members of the family are concerned. A common characteristic of a first-born child person is his confidence in being taken seriously by those around him. They are known for their strong powers of concentration, tolerance, and patience, and being organized and conscientious. The list also includes:
perfectionistic
reliable
list makers
critical
serious
schalarly
goal oriented
achiever
self-sacrificing
people pleasers
conservative
supporters of law and order
believer in authority and ritual
legalistic
loyal
self reliant

TIPS FOR MAKING BIRTH ORDER WORK FOR FIRST-BORNS

1. Take smaller bites of life. Do not get involved in too many activities at once. Leave time for yourself.
2. Work on saying no. Know your limits. You can't do everything and please everyone.
3. Remember, your parents may have had higher expectations for you than other siblings. It's fine to do a little less and enjoy life a little more.
4. You are know to ask alot of wuestions and want all the details, this is fine, don't apologize for this trait.
5. You are a cautious, careful person. Don't let people pressure you into jumping into when you would prefer to take your time to make a decision.
6. If you are the serious type, try to develop a sense of humor.
7. Never apologize for being conscientious and overorganized.

Being the mother of a typical first-born is an endeavor in patience. She must always "know" everything before she "does" anything. But her need for control and perfection will serve her well as she enters her career.

To all of the first-born children whose parents tied all of their hopes and dreams in, we are sorry for using you as the bench mark for whether or not we were good parents. But, if we failed with the first child, no one could have convinced us that we would have done better with the rest of the children. Parents have a strong need to "get it right" and we do not get practice children. The positive of this parenting experiment is the fact that the first born have leadership skills that can take them a long way in life. Having high expectations are good but should be framed within healthy obtainable goals. Hopefully, parents don't dream the impossiblble dream for their kids, but give them the encouragement to dream for themselves.

This Could Be Me At Your Next Event

This Could Be Me At Your Next Event
Author And Public Speaker

NEED A SPEAKER FOR YOUR NEXT EVENT?

Do you have an upcoming gardening, church, or women's event planned and need a speaker? Contact me. I can speak on various topics such as:

1. Detangling Ancient Mythology From Christianity
2. The Female Presence In The History Of Christianity
3. Superstitions and Gardening In The 21st Century
4. The Politics Of Prayer: The Bible Speaks
5. African American Geneaology: Pride From The Grave


Contact me at rizerfall@yahoo.com for booking arrangements

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