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original section partings when re-twisting to maintain a consistent and uniform size. It may be tempting to re-twist often, but it’s important not to overdo it. Too much twisting can lead to thinning locs and breakage.”2 “Just call me Joe,” I told her. My mom and grandma cracked up at that. I didn’t find it funny. I looked like a little boy. My bottom lip puckered and pouted and my mother’s smile only grew. “You look so cute,” my mom said as she squeezed my cheek. I would have rolled my eyes if I wouldn’t have lost my life for doing so. They are little puffs of hair that barely graze my ears. Far from the thick coils that usually shot up from my head. She told me not to touch them too much and started swatting at my hands when they failed to follow directions. More often than not, I was between her legs on the weekends, her hands coated in oil as she twisted away at my hair, encouraging the strands to love one another enough to agree to an infinite embrace. Phase Three - Teen: “This may be the stage where you wonder what’s going on with your hair. Too short to lie down easily, your teenage locs may seem to sprout all over your head and go in the direction they want to go.”3 I put my hair in a ponytail that explodes from the back of my head at awkward angles. I consider myself in the mirror. The baby fat is still in love with my cheeks and refuses to leave no matter how many eviction notices I write in celery and slim meats. I reach my hand up and free one loc from the band, letting it hang. Nope. Not good enough. I release another from the same side of my head, giving the first bang a little backup. 2 Ibid. 3 Sandeen, Del. “Going Through the 5 Stages of Loc Hair: What to Expect.” LiveAbout, 24 Sept. 2017, www.liveabout.com/ stages-of-loc-hair-400344. 8 ahmed-green

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Red Cedar Review Vol. 54  

Red Cedar Review Vol. 54  

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