When I say I am not my hair, what I am really saying is this:
Whether I choose to wear my hair in it’s all natural state on a job interview, versus taming it by running a flat iron* through it, or putting it in a nice neat bun, should not have any effect on whether or not I get the job, because I am not my hair.
If I put my hair in two strand twists the night before, and want to leave them in while I go shopping in SoHo – one of the ritzier areas of NYC – I shouldn’t have to think about whether or not I want to throw a quick straight wig* on because I don’t want to get any side eyes or strange looks all because my hair doesn’t look like the majority of the women who are shopping in or even working in the department stores, because I am not my hair.
When I go to class the professor shouldn’t give me a quizzical look and ask me what I did to my hair, or how long it took to install my twists, because I am not my hair.
Not to say I don’t like questions about my hair, but I feel like my hair shouldn’t be made a topic of class discussion. I mean, how long did it take you to do whatever you do to your hair, and did my classmates spend their tuition money to learn about black hair?
I am not an expression of my hair, my hair is an expression of me. How I wear my hair shouldn’t dictate how I’m treated, and it shouldn’t be a topic of discussion, unless warranted or welcomed; because, as much as I love my hair and take pride in it, I AM NOT MY HAIR.