I’m having hair problems. Serious hair problems. It’s growing out and has no style whatsoever. And it’s drying up. I’m not talking about a few split ends, I’m talking about that straw-like witch’s broom feeling, especially by the end of the day. My hair was already pretty bad–thin, straight, basic brown even when I color it (it resists change). And I’m of a “certain age” where I want to look young but not ridiculously young. It sucks. Growing old is like being sent away to a camp that you pretty much hate but have to put up with. The food isn’t great, you can’t do the things you used to and instead have to take swimming tests and sweaty, buggy hikes and listen to ghost stories around the campfire that are supposed to be fun but instead scare the crap out of you.
Hair is basically a nightmare for most women. It defines us in some unrealistic and torturous way. It draws the line in the sand between the beautiful and the longing to be beautiful. It brings us confidence or that please-let-me-put-a-bag-over-my-head feeling. Maybe that’s why women seem so obsessed with shoes–so they can draw attention away from their hair. Because face it, if it’s straight you wish it was curly and if it’s curly you wish it were straight. And any given day can bring disaster, except the day before you go to get it cut when it always looks great.
Thank God (and my treasured anonymous sperm donor!) my daughters don’t have my hair. They have gorgeous, thick, naturally highlighted hair you would kill for. Of course, they hate their hair. But someday I hope they learn to appreciate it, or at least make peace with it. I hope it gives them just a little buffer from all the other things the world throws at them. Sure, their smarts and humor and health and talents and personalities and just pure goodness should be enough. But sometimes it might not be. Sometimes they may face people so full of prejudice or lies or injustice or spite, that good hair will help sustain them. Good hair will give them just the extra umph it takes to roll out of bed and keep at it another day.