I am in life’s crosshairs at the moment and I need a follicle of guidance.
Our church ladies bathroom has an amazing quality to it unlike any I have encountered on the planet. When one goes to merely wash her hands, she is enlightened when she looks in the mirror. Yes, every gray/white hair that may have taken up residence on one’s crowning glory glows like a beacon in the night and waves a ‘howdy’ as the unsuspecting victim stands in shock. This is followed by our beauty queen running her hand through her natural locks to discover that these frisky follicles have invited others to a party the host had not been gotten an invitation. Gals coming out of the bathroom have a look of shock, which we, who are veterans of the bathroom crowd, recognize in a heartbeat. We nod a sympathetic look and tell them ‘ah, it’s not that bad. No one would ever know.” We aren’t lying. The lighting is just really weird, but it is a wake-up call to the first visible step toward either going natural or inviting Miss Clairol to be your new bff.
All of my life the hair dilemma voice has niggled at me. As a child of the 60’s I wanted hair to my waist. My mom trumped me with the ‘pixie’, because it was ‘cute’. I looked like a boy and wore a black 1/2 slip on my head every chance I got so I could feel the sweep of long locks. In the winter, I was allowed grow it on the condition that Mom and Grandma Moore could throw me down and perm me. Handing me the Tonette Perm Hair Style book from the box, I would never fail to pick ‘The School Girl Charmer” style. It was a one length bob to the chin with a big curl circling the cheek. I would be promised that ‘oh yes, it will look just like it.” The end result was grown out layered lumps. Pink foam rollers and pin curls were the nightly routine to go with this style. Bless Mom’s heart for trying to be Beautician of the Year. Her explanation of the pinking sheer cut bangs would be ‘if you cut them crooked, they will grow faster.” Since it was her half slip I had been stealing, she slyly got sucked me in to believing her.
Later I got control of my own hair destiny and the war began. Did I go with the short and sassy Dorothy Hamill or the feathered fame of Farrah? Sun In or not to Sun In, that was the next question. Regrowth and hair that felt like straw answered that question for my buddy, Donna and I. Cosmetology school was no help. On a whim you could frost and perm until your hair stretched like rubber bands and fell out. Whatever was new and hip we were on it like bleach on an afro. Since then our scrapbooks are full of a plethora of hairstyles from the mullet to the long curly perm to a sleek little number that I saw Mariska Hartigay sporting on Law and Order.
Last week the Magic Methodist Church Mirror informed me that the ‘really blonde’ hairs are multiplying exponentially. Once again my in-house beauty consultant ,Cliff, gets the question dumped in his lap. He’s had hair questions asked a million times in 28 years, and he knows he can’t win. He assures me what I have is not bad at all and can’t see any of the forces invading my domain. He just shakes his almost white head like he can’t believe I am even asking.
Since my brain works overtime for no good reason, I ask myself what my motive is behind my choices. If I let it the ‘really blonde’ hairs naturally run their course, it is not a big deal. In fact I have earned ever single one of those gray…opps…’really blonde’ hairs, gosh darn it! Does not Proverbs say: Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained by a righteous life.” That doesn’t sound so bad. If I do color it am I being vain? I think back to times I know I was trying to be something I am not in the World of Beauty. When Robin got married, my nails were at a weird spot. Since I have no problem growing them, I chose the cheap stick on fake nails over acrylic. I kept hearing Mammy’s voice from Gone With the Wind in my ear as I was gluing them on “You’s just a mule in horse’s harness.” I blew it off because I have friends that wear them all the time. Big mistake! I was always hunting up Super Glue before the nuptials and had nails flying like machine gun fire during the during the reception. The only bright spot was a big toe nail of Misty’s had been lost from playing volleyball in college. A Lee Press On came to the rescue of an open-toed shoe crisis.
The more I thought, that is not why I have dipped into the dye bottle. I like to mix things up ever so often. Throwing in some light streaks or testing out a red is just fun. It hasn’t mattered if it is my hair or my kitchen walls, some spice is welcome in my life. Since my motives are pure, I have the freedom to go either way.
What did I choose, you ask. Well, I still haven’t decided, but either way, I’m not listening to that Magic Mirror anymore.