Friday, November 19, 2010

Can't Keep My Fingers Out of My Hair

Young woman with afro, high section"Don't touch your hair for five minutes. Go!" That's the challenge I give my mother since she went natural earlier this year. Mom loves her hair and constantly touches it (a few times she didn't make it to five minutes). She's not alone. For some of us neo-naturals, our kinks and curls are like new discoveries after years of straightening. And our fingers are itching to explore the treasure on top.  I remember friends in college always twisting their hair during  early stages of their locking journey. And I'm proudly guilty of playing in my mane as well.  Since I've put down the pressing comb, my fingers seem to be dancing in my afro and twists non-stop.

 A few months ago I sent my hot comb and pressing cream on a long vacation. My hair needed a break from the heat and I needed a break from pressing it. I got a few ideas for styles from Prettydimples01 Youtube channel. Her hair is much thicker than mine and she's a professional stylist. When I tried to mimic her styles with my bathroom-beautician skills and semi-thick strands...well, just imagine the catastrophe for yourself.  I had to tweak her styling methods for my own texture. This meant a lot of experimentation. There wasn't much need for a brush and comb.  My fingers were doing the work. I've been using a hot comb for  a least 25 years. That's most of my life.  So while I had straight-hair styling down,  I was in the beginners class of  Natural Hair 101.  The more I played with my hair, the deeper I fell in love with not how it looked, but felt. I noticed its softness through manual teasing to make it poofy. I could  feel its bushiness under my fingernails while massaging my scalp with rosemary oil. Even combing out the little kink balls shedding from my hair ends was fascinating. It was as if my fingers touched my hair for the very first time.

My first natural style were two-strand twists. I overindulged on shea butter and locking gel. The result wasn't pretty, but droopy. My twists looked and felt sad.  I gave the style another go, less gel and no shea butter, and my twists curled up like a smile. I stood in front of the mirror, pulled a twist and boing, it snapped right back to my head.  My little twists have springiness and should I dare say, energy. I didn't know my hair could go boing, but I liked feeling the springiness. Many times when I'm working or doing nothing, I catch myself pulling at them.

Two weeks later I took down my twists and picked my hair in an afro. I noticed it starting to get dry. Although I put the shea butter away after my droopy twists, I rubbed some in my 'fro to give my hair life. My hair turned into cotton candy. It was soooooo fluffy and thick. I let my fingers lose themselves in the meadow on my head. Once again I was pleasantly surprised by the texture and the look. I always thought my hair wasn't thick enough for an afro. Not only is my hair thick enough, but soft with a little bounce.

Since sporting my first afro I've said a little thank you to God. All of these years I've been straightening my hair and not fully appreciating my God-given  texture. That's not to say I'll never press my hair again because I like the versatility of black hair. But it will be a while before I do.  I'm having fun discovering cute ways to style my hair, minus the heat.  Embracing my natural beauty a little more feels good. And so does my hair.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Listen to Cocoa Fly's Interview on the show 'Blogatique With Ananda Leeke'

Ananda Leeke
Last night I was a guest on the Blog Talk Radio Show "Blogatique with Ananda Leeke." I had a great time and again thank Ananda Leeke for inviting me to be a guest.  Leeke is one of my sorority sisters and we have never met. We've communicated online and this was our first conversation offline.  This month she's profiling Sigma Gamma Rho members who are entrepreneurs and use social media in their work . We talked about my career in journalism and blogging. Of course  we chatted up about my experience with sisterhood and Sigma Gamma Rho. If you want to learn something about journalism, or sororities or ME listen below. Next week Leeke interviews Racquel Dozier, editor-in-chief of Sigma Gamma Rho's magazine The Aurora. Dozier has lupus and will talk about the work she does to educate others about the disease.


Listen to internet radio with Ananda Leeke Show on Blog Talk Radio

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Cocoa Fly Gets Interviewed

Usually I'm the one asking the questions. But tonight, Tuesday Nov. 16th, I'll be answering questions. Blog Talk Radio host and social media guru Ananda Leeke will be interviewing me on her show "Blogatique with Ananda Leeke." We'll be talking about journalism, media, my involvement with Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority and other good stuff.  Listen in at 9:30 EST and 6:30 PM/PST online. Just click here.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Good Vibrations 'Mommy's Playdate' and Dr. Carol Queen Answers Your Sex Questions

Good Vibrations Berkeley location



  On a recent Tuesday night,  I joined a small group of moms in Berkeley for their kid-free "me time."  No diaper changes, no Barney sing-a-longs. Instead,  brownies, vibrator tutorials and Mommi-tini cocktails. Those are just a few fun things to expect at Good Vibrations' "Mommy's Playdate." The women-friendly sex store hosts the FREE event to help moms, who put sex on the back burner, get the fire blazing again.

For many mothers, sex becomes less of a priority when cleaning runny noses or singing lullabies. I'm not a mom. But from what I hear, after a day of mommy duty, the last thing some of you want to do is get it on with your partner.

"Being exhausted does have an impact on your sex life," said Susie, 39 while holding a basket of adult-goodies she won from the event's raffle.  Susie's six-year-old twins were spending time with their dad during her playdate. "I'd figured he'd be even happier knowing I was coming to get some fun things to bring home."

Dr. Carol Queen addresses our questions
The store's sexologist, Dr. Carol Queen provided the moms with a host of ideas for the bedroom, bathroom, etc. Women followed Dr. Queen on a tour of the store from the Bondage S&M  area to the vibrator section and more.  At each section Dr. Queen explained how certain devices worked while also answering our questions about sex and the body (Did you know there are condoms for vegans?). Good Vibrations is not like the traditional dark, seedy, XXXX adult shops. The store feels more like a boutique with its bright lights and friendly saleswomen behind the counters. The environment along with  Dr. Queen's openness made the mommies comfortable asking questions. We gained a ton of information from Dr. Queen. Some of the interesting points were:

 --Lube, Lube, Lube
Sometimes you need lubricant to help get aroused. Dr. Queen says, "a dry finger touching the vulva may not do the trick like lubricant."

--I never knew the purpose of cock rings until Dr. Queen schooled us. She says, "They firm the penis and make erections more sensitive. Some are designed for clitoral stimulation, especially the vibrating ones."

--Crib liners can serve a dual purpose. For those who see cleaning up after sex as a hassle or time consuming, Dr Queen recommends you, "...use crib liners and sit on them when fooling around. You wont have to worry about your [fluids] or his."


It may look like a rubber
duck...
 --Dr. Queen also encouraged we invite our partners to join us during toy play. And contrary to what we've heard about vibrators being only for women, she says men enjoy them too. "Vibration talks to nerve endings...Lots of guys feel the vibrations and go, 'whatever, that feels good.'"

--Sometimes the toys can be your substitute when your partner wants some lovin' and you want some zzzz's.
"It's good to have those toys for the guys too, " said Helen, a  single mother of a tween daughter and attending her second Mommy's Playdate  She said when you're in not in the mood just hand him the toy and say" 'Here you go honey. Not tonight for me.' [laughter]"
-- Of course you don't want your man or woman to run off and marry Duracel. So when you want to have playtime with your partner, without waking the kids, Dr. Queen suggests trying silent vibrators.

Good Vibrations next "Mommy's Playdate" is
Tuesday Nov. 16th
7-9pm
620 Polk Street (at Sacramento Street)
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 345-0400

Dr. Carol Queen Answers Your Fly Questions About Sex and Parenthood


Sexologist and author Dr. Carol Queen was so gracious to answer Cocoa Fly readers'  questions about parenthood and sex. Thanks to those of you who sent in questions.

Q: My cousin has a very traditional husband/marriage. She was a virgin when she got married & had a baby 1 1/2 years ago. Her husband says sex feels different now & she's worried that's she's "stretched out" down there. How much does your vagina stretch after a baby? Does it keep stretching after each baby? Will it ever feel the same for her husband?

Dr. Queeen: Your cousin should learn about Kegel exercises (also known as PCs, for the muscles involved: the pubococcygeal). These are vaginal exercises that tighten it all up after birth, plus they're great for making birthing a little easier -- they make the vaginal muscles more flexible, not just tighter --  and they make orgasms feel stronger too! Hers, anyway, and I am guessing that if she has better vaginal muscle control, his might just feel better also.

Here's information about these exercises:
http://www.goodvibes.com/content.jhtml?id=How-To-Do-Kegels-Strengthen-PC-Muscles

Can masturbation help a woman get her sexual feelings back after having a baby?

 

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