When I decided to let my hair go grey, I had friends older than I am tell me that it would make me look “older”. I had people that I didn’t know well, tell me that it was time to “touch up my roots.” I had people that I loved tell me I was “letting myself go”. Well, all that was very enlightening. You see, those same people wouldn’t tell me that I’ve gained weight. They wouldn’t comment on the fact that my breasts are getting saggy, or that my butt has gone flat….yet, they felt perfectly comfortable judging my hair, and assuming that my reason for going grey was because I had “given up”.
So, let me clear up a few things for you. 1. I have not given up…in fact, the only thing I’ve given up is being tied to a hair dyeing schedule. 2. I am 43, dyeing my hair brown is not going to make me look 23, and neither will the grey in my hair make me look 63. I am my age, and I’m proud of it. 3. My hair is healthier than it’s been in a LONG time, it’s not dry, there are no split ends, it’s soft and shiny and those white hairs that used to laugh at my hair dye (knowing in 2 weeks they’d be peeking out again) are now shining like silver highlights in the sun.
This grey hair journey all began when it was time to dye my hair again…and I was wondering…what color would hide the grey the longest? I looked back and forth and you know what I saw? Blonde, Brown, Black and Red. Well, my hair has been blonde, brown, black and red about a 1000x each. I wanted something different. I wanted to see what nature had given me, something that I hadn’t seen since I was 13 years old.
Now, I am not a patient woman. A patient woman would slowly grow her hair out. Nope, I am a cut it all off woman, because for me, that was the quickest way to my goal. I went in and told the stylist to give me a pixie, I think she was more nervous than I was…the first thing out of her mouth was, “But, your hair is so long!”….the next thing out of her mouth was, “You’ll hate your pixie in a week.” After that particular comment, I didn’t mention that I was giving up dye too, or I’m pretty sure she’d have had a heart attack.
Her assumption was that this was a spur of the moment, fly by the seat of my pants decision. She didn’t realize that this was something I’d thought about for a month before I made the appointment, I looked at pictures, I tried to visualize what I’d look like with grey hair ….would I look like Paula Deen with snow white hair, or would I be more salt n’ pepper? I truly had no idea, and THAT is the fun of going grey. As we get older, true surprises are less and less frequent, but the color of your natural hair IS a true surprise, because you never really get what you were expecting!
Anyhow, it’s been 8 months since I got my pixie. I still love it, although my goal is to grow my hair long. My sister said I’d look like a “witch”….I said, it was about time that my hair matched my personality (LOLOL!) She apparently hadn’t seen the pictures of mature women with gorgeous, long, beautiful hair, so I made sure to pull them up on my phone and show her each and every one….until she finally relented and agreed that long grey hair could be beautiful.
While I was on this journey of discovery, you know what I found…we are a society that still equates grey hair with “grandma”, or that once you hit 50 you have to cut it all off, because older women shouldn’t have long hair….and if you have long, grey hair, well stop the presses, the world is going to an end! If you don’t believe me, watch YouTube for a hot second. It might come as a surprise to you to know that some women go grey in their 20’s. That you don’t have to be “old” to have grey hair. It will probably come as more of a shock to you to find out that a lot of men actually think grey hair is not only pretty, but sexy as well! GASP!!!
It is 2016, can’t we embrace who we are? Why do we have to conform to society with our hair, or our weight, or our clothing? Why can’t we live the life that makes us happy? When my last day comes, I hope the people that know me, will have more to say about me than “Well, did you see her hair, she really let herself go!”
So, to all my silver haired ladies, embrace what makes you different, embrace what makes you happy. Nurture your authentic self in ANY way that makes YOU feel comfortable, vibrant, and complete. You don’t need anyone’s approval.