Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Seeing clearly

Yesterday I was running through my instagram feed and saw a post by a woman I follow who I have never met, but really wish I could.  Her pictures are perfect, but she is so real about how her house is messy and her kids run wild on occasion.  Her name is Kelle Hampton, and you can find her @etst on instagram.

Her post yesterday was a list of five random things.  One of them was that she has almost called her hairdresser three times in the last month to get her hair cut short.  I started to comment, and after a few minutes, realized I needed to actually write out an experience I had just recently.  It is way longer than I feel is polite to put in a comment on instagram.

About a month ago I got my hair cut short, like pixie short. I was pretty much not willing to consider going that short, except my husband kept asking if I was going to try it, because he thought it would be fun.  (Side note: when we first got married, he really liked my hair long, but after my first drastic cut from the middle of my back to my shoulders, he decided that as long as I was happy, he was happy.)

So finally I called a friend who has cut my hair on and off for over 8 years, one I trust every time to do a great job. She loves it when I come in; I give her a feeling I want (edgy, rocker, classic, etc.) and a length I am comfortable with and she does her magic.   

When I got to the salon I asked her what she would do if I was willing to let her do anything.


"Anything, any length."

"Awesome." Did a quick search on her phone and found the picture she wanted. "This."
Super short with long side swept bangs in front.

"Do it."

I almost never wear contacts anymore, my eyes get dry after only a few hours.  But I knew she would go short if I let her and I had to watch.  My vision is bad enough that, without correction, everything gets fuzzy about a foot out.  Usually I wear my glasses and only see before and after; the in between is a fuzzy blur.  This time I wore my contacts because I had to see it happen, had to watch every strand fall as she cut it off.

My last few months have been hard ones, even by my normal standard.  I have been working so hard to make changes, but it is so frustrating because so much of what I am working on is internal, with no proof of effort or any visual proof of change.  And to watch that hair fall around me, I could let go of some of the things that have been holding me back.  Things I have been working on but couldn't quite shake totally free of.  I was so happy.

The really funny thing, when I was done I got in the car to go home and started crying.  Not over my hair, but over the things I had left in a pile on the floor.  I felt so relieved and free.  I cried all the way home.  My husband loves my hair, I love it too.  I may never go back; but maybe I will.  Just to get that feeling again; to watch the weight fall to the floor in a brown curly pile. 

Hair grows back, problems you left behind return to be problems again.  But if even just for a moment you can see who you want to be, who you were meant to be, you can fight for it.  And when you lose sight of it, sometimes it takes a crazy step to remind you of what you wanted and how you plan to get there. 


  1. This made me tear up. So insightful, and I can only imagine what that moment represented for you. Our physical world and decisions mirror so much of what's were creative and brave in that little haircut choice. To much creativity and bravery and letting go in your future. xo Thank you so much for sharing and directing me over here!

    1. Thank you! I'm glad you liked it. I don't post as regularly as I would like, but you are welcome anytime!