Monday, July 2, 2012

Transitioning Inspiration from Ms. Tonya Jackson

Hello everyone, please help me show some love to the beautiful, Tonya Jackson.

C.M: What city, state, and church are you proudly representing?

T.J: I live in sunny south Florida!! In Miramar to be specific. I attend Pentecostal Tabernacle North Miami...we call it Pen Tab for short. My Pastor is S. Robert Stewart...I love him. :)

C.M: How long have you been transitioning for (When was your last relaxer)?

T.J: My last relaxer was September 13, 2011, so it’s been about 9 months.

C.M: Why did you decide to go au naturale?

T.J: Oh boy, well my decision was more of a conversion! It all started when I attended the first annual "Caring for Your Covering Seminar.” It was A-MAZ-ING!!! That seminar definitely helped me to make a final decision and it changed my life. My sister and I had been talking about going natural for a while but I was very hesitant even though my sister had already made the decision to go natural. And on top of that when I mentioned to my hairdresser at the time, she did not encourage the thought. But, really wanted to stop relaxing because the chemicals would ALWAYS burn my scalp terribly. Overall, I just had my own convictions about going natural because I often thought about how I never truly embraced what God had graciously given me and how I continued to hate it and hide it. I thank God that he helped me turn that conviction into change, and here I am now 9 months later.

C.M: What have you learned about your hair during this time?

T.J: Wow, I have learned sooo much! I definitely learned that my hair has a mind of its own! My hair does what it wants, when it wants to do it. Its very fuzzy, dry, curly, soft, hates combs, drinks more water than I do, easy to manipulate, and is just really pretty. A lot of the time my hair and I have conflicts but we always work it out. Sometimes we have "not so pretty days" but majority of the time we have BANGIN' days!! So, its all good.


C.M: What have you learned about yourself while taking this step?
T.J: That I am actually stronger than I thought. A lot of people criticized and ridiculed me about my decision, but God has given me strength to endure. And it's kind of embarrassing but I also have learned that I didn't have much patience. My hair really frustrates me sometimes, but I'm learning that transitioning is a process.

C.M: Do you have a funny story (comment or maybe a mistake you made with trying to take care of your hair) that you'd like to share with us while on your natural route?

T.J: Ugh! was about my 6th month into transitioning and I thought that I had everything down pack. So, I didn't want my mom or my sister to give me tips or get their opinion on ANYTHING. On a Saturday night I started to do my hair for church the next morning. But, nothing was working with my hair. Lets just say, my hair would not move...period. After fighting with my hair, I started to cry. My mom and sister decided to help me regardless of what I  had to say. Sadly, it turns out that my hair was basically a HUGE knot! I was not detangling the way I should have for the past 3 months and we all spent the night detangling and styling my hair. The next morning my hair was BEAUTIFUL, and received a lot of compliments. But every time someone would say "Oh my Gosh your hair looks so good. How did you do it?" I would look back at them, sigh and say " Long story." And then I would tell them the story I just told you.

C.M: What hair care products do you use? Have you found them helpful? Are you still trying out hair care products or have you found your staple ones already?

T.J: Well, my sister and I use the same exact products. The only difference is that I use less than she does, simply because my hair type is different and gets really heavy with too much product and looks extremely dead!

Here are the products: Tresemme Natural Conditoner, YES to Carrots conditioner, Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie, Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque, Terressentials Mud Wash (Lavender), Oils (Jojoba, Coconut, JBC (Jamaican Black Castor Oil), Sweet Almond, Grapeseed, Olive), Rosewater, ACV, Aloe Vera Leaf Juice, and of course, WATER.

C.M: Have you had any challenges so far?

T.J: The two textures are killing me!! As you now know, detangling is a hassle for me, and takes so long. I’m sure when my permed ends are gone it will much easier

C.M: What can you do relieve yourself of those hair frustrations/ What do you do to combat those feelings of frustration?

T.J: Oh man. When I start to really get frustrated sometimes i just stop doing my hair and go do something else. Because I know if i stay there I would probably cut it all off! And I also pray everyday for God to give me wisdom to do my hair. Jesus really does help me. I couldn't do it alone.

C.M: Have those closest to you supported you?

T.J: Definitely! My two closest friends love it! My sister is one of my inspirations. And my mommy was a little skeptic at first but quickly supported me when she saw my determination.

C.M: What/Who inspires you to continue beng natural?

T.J: Well, like I said one of them is my sister Jody. The other and most important is God. There is a lot of things that are messed up in this world and I just want him to see his PURE creation, especially through me.

C.M: Do you have a hairstyle that's your favorite? If so, what are they?

T.J: Hmmm... I think it would be my old school BIG cornrow/twist and my twist out high puff! My favorite protective hairstyle is kinki twist.

C.M: What does it mean to be apostolic to you?
T.J: EVERYTHING! Its not that I am focused in on the religious aspect of being apostolic, its that I love the TRUTH that we preach. Oneness, the Holy Ghost, Baptism in Jesus name, and Relationship! That’s what its all about.

C.M: How does being an apostolic define you, your hair, what choices you make with it?

T.J: Because of the relationship I have with God it compels me to want to please Him in everything that I do. Therefore, every decision, style, and product I use, I make sure I determine whether or not this will represent the God I serve.

C.M: What advice would you like to leave for those that may be on the fence about going natural?

T.J: I heard a quote one time that stated, " I don't understand why it is a statement to let my hair grow and STAY the way it naturally came out of my head." God designed each and everyone one of us in His image. Why change something that He purposely put there because He sought it fit to be there. Ultimately the decision is on you, I just believe this was the best decision for me. So, based off of my experience….Girl, if you want to go natural DO IT!! Its the way you were made to be, trust me you'll love it!

Thanks Tonya! You're beautiful. Keep on pressing on. It will all be worth it! :)


  1. Omg!!!! Ya-Ya... *tear* i am so proud of you! And i am especially happy that you are right beside me on this journey! We have both had our challenges but the end of this transitioning journey is almost finished, then the true journey begins with.. our FULLY natural journey! Stay encouraged, and positive! The end is near! Love u always and forever!

    ~Your BIG little sis

    1. GURL!!! I cant wait to have our fully natural crown of glory! I cant imagine doing this journey alone... Thank you so much for being my inspiration! Your strength strengthens me. Gurl we look GOOD! Love you times a 1,000,000,000,000.

      Your little BIG sis,

  2. I support you! Love where the desire is and the motive and you're lookin right ! Lol but im begind you iv'e been natural though soooo yea. :-)

  3. Jhamiel GallimoreJuly 13, 2012 at 9:21 PM

    Yay Tonya! So proud of you and the most beautiful thing is that your feeling good being who you naturaly are. You are an inspiration for me to stay natural because I too have those days... Keep going cuz cause you can do it! You looking good!

    Love ya, Jhamiel