It’s been eight months since I cut my hair last. It was a year before that. I’m just not big on it… anymore. I used to get my hair cut as often as my mother told me to. I used to straighten my hair almost every day, scared that to have a hair out of place would mean social exclusion in high school. I haven’t dyed my entire head for well over two years. You could be fooled into thinking that I’ve gone and done the ‘dip-dye’ look but in Truth the line you see is where I just stopped giving a shit. About regrowth, about ‘keeping up with appearances’, if how I presented myself was socially conventional and accepted.
When I moved to Canada at the start of the year I styled my hair perhaps once or twice a week, when I’d go out. Then, the weekend before I left to head down into the United States, I stepped on my GHD hair straightener, that’d been with me since the beginning of high school, rendering it useless (don’t worry, it wasn’t on!). So I boarded the plane to San Francisco post first-time-backpacker-panic-attack, with a Spanish guy I’d met in the land of snow and maple syrup, sans straightener. And it was one of the best things that’d ever happened to me. Despite not using it frequently at all, I didn’t realise how much I relied on it when I wanted to appear ‘acceptable’ in instances when I went out at night. But what else is more acceptable than how I am naturally? How God made me?
So my hair became wild, nourished by mountain streams, ridge line winds, motel showers. I became freer than I’d ever been before, let myself go barefoot in Carribean islands, fell into strangers eyes and beds, stopped apologising for everything I stand for and started to speak up.
And then my travels ended, and I came back to my home town. And I started to feel post-travel depression, in a big way, and stuck and unhappy and confused. And so I cut off my broken ends. My ends that had been scorched by the Mexican sun, by chlorine, by hair-dye. My hair, that carried memories of high-school Bulimia, and self-harm and manipulative tendencies. My hair, which carried lessons I’ve learnt, loves I’ve lost, security, and the past. To also disclose the whole Truth, I was kind of sick of that being the only thing people commented on. And then, there was this man, this man who loved my hair, it’s length, it’s beauty and I found I couldn’t wash him out… So I tried to cut him out. Then I realise, that whatever I mean to him, it does not matter. He meant something to me – I did not fall in love him, but I loved him, and I felt powerful with him, I learnt things with him – and so he will forever remain in my heart.
I was afraid that cutting it off would mean I wouldn’t understand those lessons anymore, but now I see it is all in my head… I carry the wisdom of my past within all my cells, and I can let them go now because it’s time to move forward again, here in my home town. It’s time to make the most of it.
And I’ve made a promise to myself. To not cut my hair for three years. To not straighten, nor blow-dry it, to treat it with the up-most respect. Let’s see where this takes me.
Love and Light,