January 3, 2015

the long and short of it

“A woman who cuts her hair is about to change her life."
― Coco Chanel

After weeks of meditating on it, I decided today was the day I would cut my hair. It has been slightly over two years since I last had a proper chop and the ten inches that I lost in one swift snip in front of my bathroom mirror this morning was indeed a weight lifted. When it comes down to it, I am a long-haired girl at heart. I enjoy wearing my hair long, caring for it, twisting and curling it into fanciful up-dos. I am one who believes that hair holds power, histories, stories, memories, experiences, meaning and definition. Sometimes that intensity and heaviness needs to be lightened or lost all together. I was ready for cutting, for letting go. I was ready to start being who I really am. Presently.

Two Januarys ago I posted one of my most popular pieces on the blog, a little story about how I was finally going to commit to letting my natural hair grow in, greys and all. That lasted perhaps a maximum of six months. There was the lure of fresh highlights, an opportunity for free salon hair color and the astonishing amount of silver strands coming in to divert my plan. Then again, about three months ago I decided to stop with the dyes, toners and chemicals and let my hair be. All was going well until recently when I became fixated on the way my dark roots streaked with silver looked so radically different than the auburn ends flecked with gold. I couldn't fathom keeping all that processed hair while going through this. I also realized I needed to tone down all the brassiness that summer left behind and start caring for my new hair so I began using a blue shampoo and conditioner. Immediately my hair felt decidedly softer, shiny and silky and pleasantly just a tad darker and deeper. The redness became cooler.

Recently a few of my girlfriends, some who have had very long hair for an even longer time, went short. I felt extremely inspired by them. I was charged by my recent move and the coming New Year and a deep feeling of wanting to honor my true self. I collected pictures on Pinterest. I mentally prepared myself. I enjoyed wearing my long hair loose and free for the past couple weeks. I woke up today and felt ready. Since the age of 14 I haven't spent more than six months without my hair bleached, dyed, permed or highlighted. I am excited to see what transpires and believe that this effort at letting my hair grow in naturally will finally be a successful one.

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