Touch of Peroxide
My displeasure with my hair has been a constant. I think my Mom would say that her displeasure with my hair has been a constant as well. Tangled. So Tangled. Mom finally cut it super short. They called it a Pixie cut, but even Tinkerbell has a bit of fluff and fly to her hair. Tinkerbell is adorable. This was not.
Mercifully, time passed, and soon I had control over my hair style. I grew out my bangs and flirted with shoulder length hair. Fine hair doesn't take to conditioner; it just lies listlessly on the scalp, so my new norm was fits of anger as the brush ripped out chunks of hair. Even the slightest breeze could make my fine silk mane spin and twist into an abutment of intensely woven twine. I got physically and emotionally strong yanking the brush over my raw scalp while cursing my ancestry. Or better yet, Faberge Organic Shampoo. Or those flipping Charlie's Angels. Oh, what I would have given for a perfect feather back!
And again, time ticked on. In my late twenties, I started going gray and to my utter joy, I learned that permanent hair color thickens hair to some degree. A three decade love affair with hair color ensued. Brown. Red. A very bad half year with ink black. Red again. Brown. Brown with red highlights. Blond. Burgundy. Brown with blond highlights. Most recently, purple. A touch of peroxide and me, living the dream, happily ever after.
Until now. The mirror has been showing me someone...different. This person is not me. Her hair is so fine and her scalp is starting to show at the part line. Yet, this mirror lurker looks familiar. I study her daily. I lift her hair to a shock of white and gray. Whoa! What is this crazy lady thinking letting her hair grow out like some old crone?
And yet, she is growing on me. She smiles and laughs effortlessly. She is intelligent and kind. While studying her, I have realized that she looks her age. Not younger, not older. Just exactly her age and I wondered where in the rule book it is written that she must look younger than her age. Who wrote the rule book anyway? So many requirements on women. Be strong. Work hard. Shave. Be agreeable. Clean the house. Buy the food. Shave. Be demure. Cook the food. Tuck the kids in. Shave. Wear heals that hurt. Tuck it in. Push it up. Stick it out. Shave.
It appears the pandemic rules will shift soon and I will be able to alter the mirror lady. Just a touch of peroxide and a skilled assist from my beloved hair stylist and the lurker will be gone. Poof! The question is whether I want her to be. She does have a great smile. Her eyes twinkle like she's seen some shit. She's got secrets. She's got wisdom. You can tell by her age.
Image linework by Marina Demidova