Exploring the stories of women who live by a ride-or-die philosophy

[POETRY] Y’all, he asked me to cut off my locs.

By M. Renay

Y’all, he asked me to cut off my locs.

“Take them out,” he said, “just for one day – our wedding.” I want to see you, my wife, with straight hair. Just once.

And before I even scoffed at the idea of us one day being married, about to ask if this was just an empty promise, I let myself feel his aversion to my pride. What has become my pride, my crown, my locs.

And I tried to explain what it takes for me to be a woman, and how I struggled on my journey to becoming a woman; this woman, the women standing before him, who he says he loves. 

“You’re actin like I’m tryna to change you. I’m not.” His response. But these locs are my decision, my work, and my love for myself. Yes, all that, as a part of my character. And he wants to see it straightened. And it hurt. Like hell.

My response: “If you wanted a traditional bride, if you simply cannot see yourself with a wife who looks like me, then you should find someone else.”

If not for my hair, I would be perfect. And therefore, we would be perfect. But I am wonderfully flawed. And I have just revisited the conclusion that I cannot compromise. Not even when it hurts.

I loved me first, before I loved him. And so we must come together all at once, his flaws and mine, or not at all. 

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unnamed M. Renay describes herself as a 24 year old womanist from the DMV with a passion for Human Rights and studying the history of women in social movements. A lover of music, art,fashion, and poetry, she is currently preparing for service as a US Peace Corps volunteer in Morocco.

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