Hello. I completely fried my hair recently and I'm pretty upset about it. I think I will never touch a flat iron again.

I know I needed a protectant, I know I needed a lower heat setting (now), but it is too late and I ruined my hair. I feel more comfortable with longer hair and I feel completely demolished after this.

After flat ironing my hair and leaving it for about two weeks, I attempted to wash my hair and the smell of relaxer went through the bathroom. WTF. I looked in the mirror and noticed it was almost completely straight. I Co-washed first, then used a neutralizing shampoo and washed with conditioner again. The hair remained the same, so I used a deep conditioner and still 0 results.

The problem is my hair is straight. It feels GREAT, just like a great relaxer/perm, but this isn't what I wanted. I believe I fried my hair, but it does not seem frayed or weak (it does not fall), it simply isn't the same. I have just about given up on it, but I can't cut it... I won't cut it. I can't. It is a part of my identity, as much as my skin color is.

I mourn for my hair. I realize there is likely nothing to be done, but I would like to ask for one last plea to salvage my hair. I have about 1 inch of new growth, but I cannot go down to a 1 inch length again. I just can't. My hair is about 7 inches long, including the straight hair.

Before: (my hair was longer) http://i.imgur.com/rDHECJl.png
Now: (Sorry for the weird face) http://i.imgur.com/XthZao1.jpg [My hair is wet]

Is there anything I can do, other than cut it all off?