Abena zoned out of her world and into another place. All she could hear was her mother’s muffled voice. Abena didn’t care. She couldn’t feel her mother running her hands through her hair tugging at the loose ends. She couldn’t hear her moans and groans of why God had to bless her with such a horrid daughter.
Abena imagined herself in Narnia. There she was a peasant girl called Amaranth who was in love with the general of the army named Nightsky. Nightsky was a noble general who kept true to his word. His heart was true and loyal. He fought to keep peace in their world.
Nightsky was the man who had every girl fall weak at the knees when they saw him. She was the one he loved. He could have any girl he wanted but he chose her. He chose an ordinary girl with no standing in society and he loved her for who she was.
“Abena!” She was forced back to reality as her mother slapped her cheek. Abena winced as her cheek felt as if it was on fire. “How dare you cut your hair?” Her mother was yelling now.
Abena didn’t answer so her mother slapped her again “Who told you to cut your hair?”
Abena didn’t reply. She looked into her mother’s deep brown eyes, now turning black from anger. Abena wanted to talk but her lips refused to move. She wanted to tell her mother about everything; about the insults, the reason why her bag smelt of dog shit… everything.
“So you’re not talking. In that case…” Abena zoned out again. Zoning out was her coping mechanism. She would go into Narnia and become Amaranth. There she would sit on the banks of the river, nestled in her lover’s arms.
She jumped when she heard the roaring sound of the shaver. She looked at her mother in horror unable to say anything. Oh God no. This cannot be happening. Abena whimpered as her mother forced her to bow her head. She started sobbing as the shaver came in contact with her head. Vibrations ripped across her head as the machine cut the remaining curls on her head. She watched the small clumps of remaining hair fall onto the ground. A tear fell from her eye. Her nose felt full and she quickly breathed in to stop snot from coming out from her nose. She slowly wiped the tear from her cheek. She didn’t want her mother to see her cry. No. she didn’t want her mother to see how scared and vulnerable she was. Her eyes blurred with tears but she refused to let them fall. She’d rather die than let her mother see her cry.
She began singing softly under the noise of the shaver. “Three little birds sat on my window and they told me I don’t need to worry. Summer came like cinnamon so sweet, little double-dutch on the concrete…girl put your records on, tell me your favorite song you go ahead let your hair down.” Abena’s throat tightened as she sang the song. She didn’t have any hair. She wanted to stop singing but she still kept going “Sapphire faded jeans; I hope you get your dreams, just go ahead let your hair down.”
She sang the song over and over again thinking thank God for Corrine Bailey Rae. Her mother was finished and turned the shaver off.She turned off the switch and unplugged it from the wall.
“Clean up the mess.” She said before turning around and walking away.
Abena took a deep breath. She took a broom and dustpan and started sweeping the floor. Yes she had cut her hair to start with out of anger and frustration but that didn’t give her mother the right to shave her hair off. Abena took a small bunch of hair on the floor and stuffed it into her pocket. At least she’d have a lasting memory of what her hair used to look like.
Abena finished sweeping the floor. She threw the rubbish in the bin and went into the bathroom. She removed her clothes, now covered in hair and threw them in the laundry basket beside the sink. She looked at herself in the mirror and gasped. She was bald. All her hair was gone. She touched her skull. It was smooth and it shone in the bright light. She dropped her shoulders. Her lips began to tremble. Her beautiful hair was gone.
She fell to the ground and began to weep.She cried like she never had before. Her hair was gone. It would be a good reason for the students to torment her again. What would she do to hide her baldness? She didn’t have a wig to hide it.
Her fist came in contact with the wall. “Stupid school. Stupid life. Stupid mother. Stupid me.” She thought. This was all her fault. If she hadn’t cut her hair, then maybe she would still have her hair.
She slowly raised herself from the floor and stepped into the shower. She turned on the cold water and closed her eyes as the icy cold droplets lunged at her like flying knives and hit her with great force. The cold hit her like knives digging into her skin. She gritted her teeth to stop her teeth chattering. Her body began to dissolve and crumble. She looked down at the floor. Hundreds of small strands of black hair were around her like a wilderness. She watched them bounce softly as the droplets descended unto them.
“Let the rain wash away all the pain like yesterday.” She whispered before turning off the tap.