I had the best spa experience in my life so far. And it was mainly due to putting my straightening comb on sabbatical and went natural. My life has been far from a crystal stair lately. When someone treated me to a free massage anywhere of my choice, I booked an appointment at The Claremont Hotel in Berkeley with the quickness. My mind and body were crying out for some calm and release. I’ve been to spas and enjoyed my experiences, before but this time was different. I packed a bathing suit in my tote bag and nothing else. No comb, doo rags, hair gel, grease, scruniches, brush or shower caps. Nope. Just my bathing suit and a worry-free hair attitude.
I arrived to the gorgeous hotel and walked downstairs to a paradise of white terry cloth robes and cucumber water. My massage was heavenly. I got the full body treatment. The masseuse massaged my scalp and I didn’t care. A few years ago I would have been concerned about her lavender-oiled hands messing up my straightened hair. I didn’t care this time and let her fingers rub through my fro. I think her hands got stuck in my kinks a few times, LOL. Hey it is what it is. I don’t recall my scalp ever being massaged. My God it felt goooooood.
Next stop was the steam room. In my pressing days, I wrapped a towel around my head and stayed in the steam room for a few minutes. I’ve always liked steam rooms but didn’t want to risk my straightened hair, that I spent $50 on at the salon, getting nappy. So I deprived myself of a simple pleasure. Ahh, but it’s a new day. I reclined on the stone tile steps in the steam room and loved every sweaty second. The only towel I used in the room was to sit on. Black natural hair loves water. My hair embraced the moisture and my skin left with a priceless glisten.
I put on my swimsuit and simmered in the whirlpool. No black scarf on my head. No shower cap. My hair was out, wild and free. But the best moment of the day, the moment I gave God a “thank you” was when I bathed in a majestic 6-head shower. I turned on the ceiling dome head and warm water gently rained on me. There was no way in hell I would have done that a year ago. No way. I spent at least 20 minutes in the shower, occasionally twirling under water drops. I felt free and at peace. A year ago I would have walked away from that shower, with a plastic cap on my head a little disappointment because I couldn’t enjoy the full experience. God forbid I spend 20 minutes in a shower getting my hair wet, only to spend a couple of hours washing, blow drying, pressing and flat ironing it again. Thankfully, I have freed my mind and hair.
I floated out of the Claremont Hotel that day worry free, smelling of lavender and a little ashy. Next time I’ll pack body lotion in my tote and conditioner for co-washing in the shower. Spas are meant to be relaxing. My past hair worries took away from the full, relaxing experience. Ahhh, but it’s a new day for me.