I have naturally wavy hair, fine in texture and mousy brown in colour. Add gel or conditioner, and the whole affair falls flat. Conversely, my husband has coarse, thick, poker straight, jet-black hair that stands straight up with the requisite gel.
Since we adopted Theo, his hair has been a focus of constant attention. He has a full head of fast-growing loose African curls, something neither of us has any experience with. Grownups want to run their hands through it, strangers ask to pat him on the head (yes, really), and little children show him who’s boss by grabbing him by the curls.
It took a week to shake the sand out of his hair after a day at the beach, and every visit to the park means pebbles in the hair. He’s at an age where he picks things up and throw them backwards over his shoulder or head, and this applies to sand, pebbles and assorted food items. I’ve scrubbed sticky banana out of his hair and regularly pick cookie and cracker crumbs out of his curls with my fingers. I’ve never combed his hair and noticed recently that was starting to look like it needed some help.
Rather than break out the razor, I decided to ask his birthparents for their advice. We all agreed that a little Afro would be super cute but would require some attention. They advised us to wash his hair no more than once a week, put baby oil in it at night and comb out the tangles with a wide-tooth comb regularly so it does not become matted.
It felt great to be able to ask his birthparents in person how best to care for his fantastic curls. Now if I could only figure out what to do with my hair…