Yesterday I got my hair cut. That's generally not a big deal. I've had countless hair cuts in my life, and for the most part they've been non-eventful.
Not this one though.
I've been going to the same person for a few years, but the last couple of cuts had issues. As in my bob had become asymmetrical when it shouldn't have been. And so, it was time for a change. But where should I go?
I was completely stumped. Stuck. Incapable of making a decision. I put it up to my lovely friends on facebook and got quite the enthusiastic responses with a wide variety of options.
The decision wasn't getting any easier. By that point even my 9 year old son looked me square in the eye and told me I needed help.
And then, the humidity.
Two days of rain and fog and poofing and waving in unexpected places.
One salon took email requests. I shot off a panicked message late Monday night and got a response back early yesterday that they had time at 2:30. I was that desperate. I needed help immediately. I couldn't spend another day, another hour, battling rogue flips with my hair iron.
The place is called Crown. Loved the name. The logo. Their website. Clean, clear, simple, bold. When unable to make up my mind, those things factor in a big way. Alexis sat me down and asked what I wanted.
I had nothing to offer. I wanted my hair but better. Sleeker. Tighter. Flatter. No suburbia (that's how I've been feeling lately). I wanted clarity, line, shape.
She got it and started chopping. I learned more about my hair in that hour than I had in my entire life. Things like my hair is actually thin but there's so much of it that it feels unmanageably thick. That without thinning it out (or texturizing which sounds way better) I'll always struggle with puffiness. That when my hair is one blunt length, my summer bleached out color looks like the remnants of a single color process—I learned what that was too.
I also learned that I have no real grey. Those few strands that pop up now and again are just about it. Loved that one.
And so, Alexis cut. And cut. And chopped. And shredded (my word).
I don't look like me anymore.
And here's the challenge. I've had basically the same hair for 12 years. After having it super short (as in buzzed at Astor Place), pregnant me realized I looked like a pin head so I spent my first pregnancy growing my hair out and it's been a bob ever since. And the thing is, I have good hair. I actually have great hair. It's thick and heavy, wants to be blonder. It holds shape really well and if even if everything else about me is a mess, my hair makes me feel put together.
Turns out I've been hiding behind my hair. And now that I don't have it, I feel exposed.
For a person who puts themselves out into the world in the most insane colors and patterns and vintage craziness, it's amazing how an unexpectedly short hair cut can feel like I'm baring my soul.
Or at least my cheekbones.