Scalp-Greasing: A Black Hair Ritual

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Greasing or oiling the scalp has historical roots for black Afrikans born in America. In fact as we’ve become more knowledgeable about the benefits of natural oils, scalp oiling has become common practice among people of all ethnicities to maintain healthy hair and scalp. This entry will highlight how it relates directly to the women in the #afrikanface show and to people of Afrikan descent. During enslavement, we no longer had access to #palmoil that we used in #afrika to care for our hair, so we used other oil-based products like #lard #butter #crisco to condition and soften our hair. Scalp greasing is a ritual.

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Dr. Kari explains perfectly, “The days of washing our hair at the kitchen sink, detangling in the bathroom, perhaps blow drying, and spending time on your mom’s living room floor on a pillow, nestled between her legs for that routine scalp greasing. It was a ritual that, no matter how busy life got, was NOT forgone. Part by part, inch by inch, your scalp was doused in a “miracle” grease”…

Scalp time was our love time (I wrote a poem about this). It was a time to bond, for mama to lay open her hands souls to literally groom you. It seemed almost therapeutic for both of us (even when my hair was tangled, still a tender headed ass), the way she would place a dollop of grease on the back of her hand, comb, then grease, then part, then grease some more, then plat or braid. The jewel was how she managed to have full fledged conversations, sip beer, and brushed my baby hair all fancy, adding her finishing touch. Those were the days, nights, afternoons I still long for today. Come to the show to see how the hair ritual unfolds!

Warmest,

Thee Amazing Grace B

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You Never Have To Prove Your Way

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#wcw. You never have to prove your way into anyone’s life, they just have to trust you that’s all. My mother was never one to prove anything, even when all the stakes were high and odds against her. Even through her addiction, the abuse, and disappointment I learned to trust her. She was the first one in this world that I ever had to trust. I learned to trust the parts of her process that counteracted her addiction, the visceral #spiritmama that birthed me, born me & raised me up. I remember the moment she stopped fighting to keep us although much damage had been done. It was the proudest and most painful part of growing up. I know that she cared more deeply for us than this life flesh could ever show. The day I learned to trust my mother was the day she learned to trust herself. #restinpeacemama #wcwmama #restwell #gonebeforetime #trust #girlrillavintage #tag #theeamazinggrace

Embracing My Ugly

Red Foxx said, “Beauty may be skin deep, but ugly goes clear to the bone”. Had someone recently ask me, how I “deal” with #adultacne. I replied that I don’t lol! They explained, apologetically in so many words about how their skin is tied to the center of their sense of self and couldn’t understand where my confidence comes from without having #flawlessskin skin. I thanked them for sharing that. I reminded them that my “scars” and #skin are part of me, not all of me. And by embracing my “ugly” I heal and feel great about my life! And no, not as in the way ugly opposes beauty because #ugliness is not the absence of #beauty. My appearance doesn’t dictate that. freeyomind #tag #girlrillavintage #uglyalookwithgreatcharacter

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To the Maia Campbell’s of the World, We love you!

IMG_5349We always have the opportunity to value someone in a low place. A friend and I met a gentleman of #afrikanfacedescent yesterday who was visibly troubled. He stumbled through each step like a baby first learning to walk. His hands and arms were badly swollen and bruised. His shoulder was injured, covered in a thick, bloody gauze. His eyes were glazed over. His clothes were disheveled, draping over his frail bones. He looked fucked up! As my friend and I approached we asked how we could help him. He could barely speak. We probed until finally he agreed to some water. I ran to my house to grab something cold. It was hot out there! We encouraged him to seek medical attention, but he refused. He told us that he was a accosted by the police the night before and all he wanted was to go home. He never told us where home was. But we stayed with him, listened to him, put water on his neck, showed him that he matters. He finally got the strength to continue on to his destination. He reached to give us hugs and thanked us for our help and told us he would never forget us. His eyes became brighter just for a moment. We embraced him, tight because healing is what he needs. He might’ve been on #dope but none of that mattered. My mother was #crackaddicted and didn’t survive. Human beings are spiritual beings and they need love. Sending all my love to #maiacampbell who needs all the love she can receive.

Warmest,

Grace

To Smile Was My Only Inflection

 

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Struggling to Self love in summer

Self portrait. #summer2015 During a time of major transition. When the events in my life had me feeling grimy and less than powerful, unattractive and sore in heart. The sun was brighter and warmer that day, managed to hug me out of bed and into these clothes, onto this chair and under the trees where I could breathe. Suddenly, shit didn’t feel so bad. Reminded me of that unstoppable time on the train from Savannah when I knew then that my existence was never meaningless. And just like that my soul was warmed to the bone. To smile was my only inflection. #tag #theeamazinggrace #girlrillavintage #selflove #sunnydays #soullight #winning

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Just reminiscing about the first time Perley visited me in PA. How we talked about my ‪#‎sunflower‬, brother David Berry. He said some beautiful affirmations in honour of his spirit and then played this song in dedication to him. I hadn’t heard this song in so long! I could feel David all around us that moment as if to solidify Perley and I connecting. Brotha always lets me know how he feels even beyond the sky. How beautiful the gesture and what a beautiful song! Thank you P. ‪#‎RestinBruceLeeFlicksmydearbrother‬ ❤ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UghiVZtyEUo

One August Afternoon in Clark Park Philadelphia

she knew that she loved him that late August afternoon in Philadelphia’s Clark Park when her heart gently pulled itself away from her chest to keep up with his quick stride-his dignified step. his soul-alive from the beginning. our magnesian flesh-attatched without warning. nothing less than magikal. only smells of oak shrubs and vegan falafel underneath blistering hot sun. not even our own freedom could’ve prepared us for the journey to come nor the sound of hugh masakela pandora station playing loud from the speakers. instead our good sense felt us through rapid successions of heart beats, iPhones, usies, flirty “ass” gestures, close talk, art and disbelief. flutterflies beneath root chakras had us open. our love extraordinary like supernovas. dared into an abyss of melanin. wide open. two non-corporeal of substance contrasted with the material of our bodies. we longed for each other like missed soul connections or like the last hug received from a loved one that had passed on. prototypes of afrikan descent, overlapped after thousands of years. nothing mattered-time nor reason. our love expressed like breast milk. unabashed the moment we “saw” each other. love archaic before conception. nothing less than a mirakle. solar planets lit the way. sage smoke cleared the path we skipped along. our locs told stories. our kinesics serenaded vulnerable. been singing ever since.

-Thee Amazing Grace

#GirlrillVintage #MrGirlrillaVintage #Love #ClarkPark #Philadelphia #Melanin #Afrikan #BlakLove #BlackPinups

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