Thanks for your stories everyone! I'm managing wet hair fine at the moment with braids (with leave-in condish and mousse or gel) or sleeping on it (while wet, loose and full of leave-in conditioner), waking up, combing and defining it with gel in the morning. I have split ends but I don't want to trim for a while because I'm so close!!
I'm glad you got some inspiration from my thread, WavingNotCurling.