Hair Story: Loryn Drops Her Dreads


I have very unique and wonderful children. I've always encouraged them to express themselves, question authority, and be of service to others. My eldest daughter has always had a strong sense of identity. When she was around 6 years old, she 'became a detective'... Yes, in her mind she was a detective, and she set up a table, with her sign at the top of our hill in North Vancouver, where the neighbors drove by. She was devastated that no one came to her with 'detective work'.

Later when we moved to The Bahamas, being the eldest  of my four children she likely noticed the cultural differences the most out of all my children due to her age, but she adapted quickly. Fulfilling a dream I had we homeschooled for 4 years, but in our 3rd year she decided she wanted to experience high school. There she experienced a lot of racism.

Our marriage broke up and I don't believe that that had any direct effect on my daughter's desire to grow dreadlocks, as it was also a time of exploration into things most teenagers get into, like drugs, and alcohol. She was also rapping, and free-styling discovering her artistic side.  She came up with "Ayfere" as her expressive  name.

Her first set of dreadlocks, where quite horrendous in my eyes as she let them come in naturally, which meant to do little but let your hair get matted up, and rub away at sections to bind them together.   I remember dropping her off at school with her siblings and she'd go strutting in confidently with her matted hair and her clean uniform.  Her school was extremely supportive during this time, as they knew we were a family going through divorce, and the teachers and head master also knew how incredibly bright she is.

I know a lot of the parents were actually frightened of my daughter during those years. She was wild, tall and confident, but not the usual 'look' of a young intelligent woman going into the IB program at her school with her crazy dreads.  Little kids would run up to her and interact with her, not seeing what their parents did. The school was kindergarten to IB 13, so it was a wonderful family environment.

Loryn's first round with dreadlocks, in Grand Bahama Island as a teenager

I never once made demands for her to cut her dreads. I know that if you push your kids, they will push against you harder. After all, it was only hair, and when she was ready she made her own decision to cut them off.  I of course was relieved.

Fast-forward 10 years and life back in Canada instead of Grand Bahama Island.   My daughter, now in university,  shows up one day with dreadlocks again. Her long luscious thick straight locks gone.  That girl has the most amazing head of hair when it's natural and long. I again bit my tongue, and was at least pleased that her fiance  had helped put them in this time, doing their best to get the right technique.

Just weeks ago she announced to me that she was going to cut her dreadlocks to be job-market ready, as she graduates in June.  She said she didn't want any stereotypes placed upon her in the work market.  I was relieved to hear this, and excited for her.

The day arrived and we treated it like a special occasion (it was), as whenever one makes a radical change in  life, it should be marked and celebrated.  I walked down to meet them at Remix Hair Studio in Coquitlam, and documented the whole ordeal, which was great fun.

My daughter was so ready for the 'lightness' and 'freedom' of this particular 'letting go', and the funny bit is that she told me that she'd wanted a pixy cut over 2 years ago, but was too chicken, so she did the dreads to come all the way to that day she chopped them off... a long ride, but that's my girl!

(To see the entire Hair Story photo album on Facebook, Click HERE)

A before and after shot.  Beautiful and spirited either way. After all, it's only hair!