Tuesday, February 21, 2012

My Vanity: My Hair

Post roller time
The older I get, the more I come to realize that most reasonable people hated high school. And that most people going through high school or middle school were going through some sort of serious trauma that they hid from other people. I say this because I've talked with people I've gone to high school with (or at least those who I didn't remain close with in college) and found out they were going through stuff I had no idea about. Teasing, divorce counselling, taking lunch at home. All kinds of things I was too wrapped up in myself to see. 

But thinking of all that, I also look back to see what did I do to keep my shit together. Mostly I suffered from an odd case of having no or low self-esteem but exceptionally high self-respect. Meaning my overall pictures of myself wasn't great--mostly due to my weight issues, but I knew enough to know that I was smart and that counted for a lot in my book. And when I was having my ugly days, there was one thing that my mom did for me that still makes me smile: she introduced me to the kindness of hot rollers. 

One side of my hair holds curl
better than the other.
Anyone else have that?
My mom did other things, like constant reinforcement of my intelligence and the importance of that, but sometimes a girl needs to feel pretty. And was during one of those moments in need that my mom bust out her big old set of hot rollers and went to town. She would tell me how pretty my hair was and how she was excited that she had passed that down to me. And to this day, when I'm in the need to feel pretty about myself, I wrap my hair up in those hard plastic rollers and sweat it out until I'm left with bouncy curls and happiness. Luckily, I do not have to do that every day as I did in high school (and well into college), but every now and again, it's a nice reminder. 

It was these moments that helped me realize how hard it was for my mother to lose her hair during chemo. She never intentionally let my stepdad see her without a wig or other head covering because of it. But I knew what was bothering her--her secret weapon was gone and there was no easy way to get it back. She handled most things silently but she was pretty vocal about losing her hair. I would be too.

It is my go-to vanity. And there when I needed it most. And if it ever comes to losing my hair, I'll invest in a damn good wig--that I can hot roller.

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