Something took over my brain a few months back. In a moment of stress I gathered my long silver locks, pulled them to one side, and cut off about eight inches. It took some doing with my dull green-handled kid scissors. But sadly, I prevailed. And since then, I’ve been on a rollercoaster with my summer ‘do.
My good friend Serena said, “Short hair is cooler in the summer.” I appreciated her optimism. And she’s right. It has been cooler in Florida’s humidity with hair not always heating up my head. But like I said, my moment of haircutting stress has sent me on a rollercoaster of deep contemplation and grief.
I actually went to counseling shortly thereafter, not specifically about my hair, but somehow my hair took center stage; after all, a lot was missing.
“You cut your hair,” my counselor said.
“Yes, I cut my hair,” I said, “as in literally I cut my hair. In a moment of stress. I look like David Cassidy on the Partridge Family.”
“Yeah you kinda do,” my counselor agreed, laughing. And I laughed too.
I needed to laugh.
But then…”Why do you think you cut your hair,” my counselor continued, more seriously. (Such a counselor thing to say).
“I don’t know. I was stressed,” I said again, dodging his question. But there was that big bit of information that made my answer sort of irrelevant. I had never done that before in my entire 57 years of existence, that being cut off eight inches of my hair. Why? was a really good question. People don’t typically cut off most all of their hair when they’re stressed. There are much better ways to manage the weight of the world.
So, why did I cut my hair?
Well…I’m still not entirely sure, but I aim to provide clues with some future posts, as much has revealed itself in my contemplation of this question. In my previous post, I said I had some meaningful news that I would share later, which kind of relates to the angst of my summer ‘do, but I’ll get to the meaningful news in a minute. Before I do (no pun intended), I thought you might enjoy my audio rendition of the hair saga as I explained it to my fellow Toastmasters during a hip pocket speech (presentation with zero prep), during last week’s Toastmasters at Twelve meeting. Imagine someone with their mouth stuck wide open when I say, “He looked like this.”
Also, here’s a little detail I failed to mention in my speech that might help set the stage:
While crying at my hair salon, after calling my hairdresser Katie to please perform a miracle on my chopped hair, she retrieved a Kleenex from the bathroom and handed it to me with an apology, “Sorry, it got shredded when I pulled it out of the box.”
I looked at the pitiful tissue and said, “Looks like my hair.”
And continued to cry.
Thank you Katie for your understanding, your hugs, your wisdom to be silent while I cried, and for fixing my hair the best you could under my layered circumstances—literally and metaphorically. This recording is dedicated to you. Enjoy. 😢
Okay, so onto my “meaningful news.” In the midst of all this hair distress I received a text from the owner of Olio, an awesome little boho boutique, asking if I’d be available to represent them as a model at New Smyrna Beach’s summer fashion show. I had decided to try some “mature” modeling and further explore the topic of “body image,” something that I continue to sort through at midlife. Without going into all the details of how I started modeling, my efforts resulted in working several fun jobs for Olio, and ultimately deciding that instead of trying to “work” the modeling thing (it is work to get work), I was having too much fun doing jobs for Olio.
The Olio ladies are super easy to work with, I love the clothes, and it’s only a few minutes from my house. I will write more on this later and what I’m learning about body image as a “mature” model, but I thought I’d post a sneak peek now.
“Yes, I’m available.” I texted back. I found myself a bit panicked however, as the owner did not know I had chopped off my hair.
Long story very short (again, no pun intended), I strutted down the red-carpeted catwalk and had a great time. Thank you Olio for helping me not define too much of myself by my long locks. You assured me that I was still quite worthy of wearing Olio.
Stay tuned, as I have more to say.
So much more.