The other day, I had had enough of my hair. I have a lot of it and none of it good.
Now I know that I won’t get much sympathy from many of you for having more than my fair share of hair, but with every blessing comes a burden. And the burden of having so much hair, besides that it is hot, is that blow drying it requires time and skill that I do not possess. If I could take back all the hours I’ve spent blow drying my hair, I could learn another language, even one of those hard ones that don’t have any vowels.
And let me tell you, aging does not make hair more lovely. Gray hair, even colored gray hair, has a texture all its own, a texture that says “estrogen on the decline, downhill from here”.
There are a few older women who can wear long hair, but not many. In my opinion, a woman of a certain age sporting long hair (or a mini-skirt or a midriff top) looks like she’s trying too hard to hang on to her long-gone youth and there’s nothing pretty about that. Beauty should look effortless — even if it’s not.
So the other day, I had had enough of the hair and the ponytail holders and the barrettes. Being the impulsive person that I am, I called the salon and asked if there was anyone there who could cut my hair in the next 15 minutes. There was, so I went and they did. And when I left the salon, I was very happy to be rid of the hair. I liked my haircut. I liked it a lot. I felt 10 years younger and 10 pounds lighter. I whistled as I skipped to my car. (My mom just emailed to say that she went and got her hair cut and felt ten years younger so she went back and got another haircut the next day.)
When I got home, I ran upstairs to show my new haircut to AD, and being a learned man in the fine art of marriage, he diplomatically said, “Oh! Look at you! You got your hair cut!” I gleefully shook my head from side to side so he could see how I could make my hair twirl out like skirt. One side fell across one eye in a sexy Veronica Lake sort of way. Clearly he was mesmerized by my new haircut. He said he had never seen such beauty in all of his life. No not really. What he actually said was, “I gotta get back to work now.”
Undaunted, I bounced downstairs and took a picture of me and my sassy new haircut and I emailed it to my mother who loves short hair and has never missed one single opportunity since 1973 to tell me how me how much better she thinks I look in short hair. So I asked her, “What do you think of my new haircut?!” She quickly replied, and I quote, “I don’t know.”
Later that afternoon, as I walked up to the school to pick up Sean, I enjoyed the sensation of the cool breeze on my neck and my bouncin’ and behavin’ hair. As I started to cross the street, my friend Jennifer pulled up in her car. She rolled down the window and exclaimed, and I quote, “What happened to you?”
Hmmm. I’m starting to get the idea that no one likes my haircut. Luckily for me I don’t care because I am unofficially 10 years younger and 10 pounds lighter. And besides, I can twirl my hair out like a skirt if I want to.
When I dropped Sean off at school that morning I had long hair, but now I had short hair and I wondered how he would react. Much like his father, he does not dig change. As he ran out of the school doors, he spotted me and his face lit up. He ran to me, buried his face in my tummy and wrapped his arms around me. “I like your new haircut Mom!” he exclaimed. “You look really cute!” God I love that boy. Kids are so honest.
The next morning, after breakfast, Sean and AD sat at the table working on vocabulary words. One of the words on the list was adorable. Using the word in a sentence, Sean said, “I love Mommy. She looks adorable.” God I love that boy.
So off we went to school; AD, Sean and his vocabulary words, and me and my new haircut. Sean’s teacher said she liked my haircut and the crossing guard said she thought my hair was cute. If you can’t trust the opinion of the 1st grade teacher and the crossing guard, who can you trust?
On the way back home, I mentioned this to AD. And in a dangerous move, I asked him point blank: Do you like my new haircut? He said, and I quote, “It’s growing on me.”
“I have to tell you something,” he said hesitantly, “but you have to promise it won’t hurt your feelings.”
So I braced myself to have my feelings hurt.
“This morning, after Sean used the word adorable in a sentence? He whispered in my ear that he didn’t really like your haircut but he didn’t want to hurt your feelings.”
God I love that boy.
And I love my new haircut.
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More on Antique Mommy’s hair here: The Bob is the New Helmet Hair