Cross Cultural Family

Our Curl Journey – Hair, Heart and Identity

One of the best parts of being a parent is that I can fix things. Like a caped crusader I can kiss a boo boo, find a lost blankie, provide comforting arms when their scared. But I’m an extremely limited super hero. There are so many moments I won’t be able to rescue them from.  I’ve been parenting long enough to know fixing everything isn’t my primary job. That doesn’t mean I don’t try.

It was the third scariest moment of my life. Standing in an ethnic hair store, watching a tear roll down my daughter’s tender face as she realizes that this is her reality. It was a simple request. “I want to swim and then be able to play, not all this complicated hair routine.” My daughter and I don’t have the same hair journey. Her gentle curls are fine like mine but curly like her Chadian father’s. All our affection for natural hair and loving your curls she still won’t be able to jump out of the pool and run into her life without thought, planning and hours spent “doing hair.” I have a college degree and years spent in Africa. I knew when I needed help.

I’m thankful for the way our family represents the beauty of God’s creation in each of us. I’m thankful for the puzzled looks that children give us and for their innocent questions. Learning to ask what seems like a simply question has been the hardest hurdle for me to cross.

The good news is hair is the center of community for much of our world. I hope someday she’ll be able to appreciate the hours of laughter she’s spent with wise woman lovingly bringing her hair to life. I’m thankful for the bond it’s created in us as we’ve braided, combed, curled, nourished and nurtured her sweet tresses.

By the grace of God and some miracle in his design my sweet daughter was born bi-racial when the Natural Hair Movement began. Women of all ages began educating themselves and reaffirming their commitment to their curls. Multi-ethnic hair products have become available at Target today. The internet offers women of all colors instructional videos, opinion and product like never before. I’m so thankful for the education I’ve received from these women who will never know how much they ministered to me and terrified me. If you’ve never been to an braiding salon or an ethnic hair store the Saturday before Easter than you have no idea the effort, time and expense so many of our beautiful sisters have spent on their Sabbath tresses.

Natural hair, it can be overwhelming, messy, imperfect and expensive but the look of confidence in her eyes when we get it right is priceless. The help I’ve received has not only helped us learn about hair but also given us a place in a beautiful community with members being added every day.  Our repertoire has grown from simple twists or braids to crochet styles and faux dreads. Afro puffs still make my heart go soft and I love the auntie that gave her blue box braids this summer with an affection only a white mama can understand.

These days it’s special watching her grow and care for her hair on her own. But I still love separating the curls with my fingers, massaging conditioner into the root myself. Each style becomes a mother’s prayer. It’s a prayer for peace, for beauty, for strength.

A prayer she finds her own voice in this world and delights in her unique expression of God’s glory.

From my heart to yours. . .

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Not all who wander are lost. . in ...

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The child of missionary parents, writing became a natural was to process my adventures across the world.

Ndjerareou means 'he who builds the road in Ngambai, Nate's tribal language spoken in Chad, Africa.

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  • "It is a happy talent to know how to play." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
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It may have only lasted for 30 minutes but it was delicious to watch him frolic. Thankful for languid  afternoons, family and all the laughter .
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#klydewarren #abilenetx #cousins #freeplayarlington #familyfun
  • No one told me it would require solitude to put pen to paper
And yet my loneliness provides a voice

In the space between wonder and wandering my soul speaks

The margin between exultation and despair is the place I reach out

The prayer to be heard becomes a longing to be understood 
The desire flows into rhythm and story flows out into the world

When the Lord spoke the world into being he created from the void 
From nothing he created life and beauty 
And it was good.

The divine spark of creativity is a gift 
Left over from the beginning of time

Yet the act demands that I enter into the void

The space between belonging and being lost

To listen to the wild call of the soul

To hear it echo in a silent space 
The one that bubbles up with bravery 
To think or dare to place your vision into the sea of life 
A call to from nothing into something

It is the imprint of the creator

Like a prayer we pour our energies into the space of humanity

An offering to the divine 
A reflection of something sacred in the broken reality of our world

May I never loose the hunger to enter the void

Grant me faithfulness to doggedly pursue the gift

To steward to act of creating something from nothing 
Honor the creator 
Build a bridge to my sister

Speak truth in the darkness

Story on the soul

The Lonely Act of Creation - A Poem by S.K. Ndjerareou . .

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  • "We're all mad here!" -Lewis Carol
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 Trunk or Treat 2017 at the Village Church, Fort Worth is in the books! Thank you to everyone who poured your love, creativity and time into our community! An epic night!
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  • "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." -Maya Angelou
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The beauty in a gathering of friends is the warmth that is ignited within us. The gentle touches that make us feel welcomed and cared for can be as simple as a cup of coffee or as detailed as exquisitely laid table. Both are an offering of love and kindness. Yesterday, a lovely group of women that I admire invited me into partake in friendship, a good meal and a moment of encouragement. As I walk away with renewed and nourished soul I am so thankful for these women who remind me of the gifts of hospitality. I'm grateful for the tender power of this art form, this place to gather that feeds the spirit, mind and heart.
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  • My fall flavors are carrot cake & ginger bread. But I have a confession, I don’t bake well. I rarely wear my glasses in the kitchen and I’ve NEVER followed instructions very well so my baking mistakes are epic. The precision and concentration to create confectionary masterpieces is rarely worth the time or the guilt.  Birthday cakes come from Costco, I can make put cookie dough on a pan but I’ve even been known to mix up baked goods that come out of a box.  I do LOVE to cook.  I used to love painting but it feels the same in my brain as standing over the stove and my people are much more excited to see my culinary creations than my artwork. Go figure! .  Today, I bake to make memories. Life is moving fast and I’m always looking for meaningful ways to engage my children.  This recipe will give you those stolen moments together. For the recipe on these Carrot Cake Cookies click the link in my profile. It’s so easy even I can do it. .  #makememories #carrotcakecookies #fall #nothingisordinary #familytime #everydayadventure #nothingisordinary #ibakedit #webaketogether #frommykitchentoyours
  • "One secret of life is that the reason life works at all is that not everyone in your tribe is nuts on the same day. Another secret is that laughter is carbonated holiness." -Anne LaMott .
I'm so thankful for my tribe @arthousedallas and the inspiration, encouragement and laughter they've brought along the way. .
Today, I got my hands on an advance copy of Empathy for the Devil, Finding Ourselves In The Villains of the Bible, by JR Forasteros. @jrforasteros .
I've had the privilege of watching this piece grow from edited pages our tribe has spoken into and over to this fantastic book. Thanks for sharing your journey with us! Look for the book Nov. 7th. .
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