Tuesday, June 28, 2011

#15 He Likes My Hair

Alternate title: My Life Through My Hair

I've never been someone to give constant worry over my hair. I figure that unless I am going to live with a staff of stylists on hand, my hair will never be perfection. So, why bother? Perhaps that's why I can pretty much create a timeline of my life through the changes of my hair.

I was born with a nice coating of dark brown hair. (Is "coating" not politically correct to describe a baby's hair? If not, I'm sorry to all the babies out there). For a baby girl's mother, this is an extremely good thing. It makes for a quicker start to growing longer hair so people don't have to go through that awkward moment of thinking the baby is a boy when in actuality it is a girl.

Minus the occasional trimming, by second grade I had not had a major haircut. This was then forced upon me by a friend's gum being spat into my hair while at church one Sunday night. Perhaps this incident is what caused me to have such a carefree feel for my hair. Or perhaps I have mentally blocked the trauma of this incident completely. Luckily, the gum was on the back of my head and towards the bottom of my long locks. But there was no escaping it being cut out. My mother had no time for rubbing my hair with peanut butter or soaking it with oil. She proceeded to give me a bob. Thankfully, it ended up actually being cute.

The make up of my genetics fortunately or
unfortunately gave me ruler straight hair. And while some girls kill for it and spend hours a day making their hair look naturally straight; I always had the fascination and desire for curls. (Yet I did, oddly enough, still own a hair straightener). In sixth grade, in either an act of desperation or sheer insanity I decided to roll my hair in a comb. Why I thought that would do anything, to this day, I still do not know. Of course, I rolled it all the way to my scalp which made for an even more interesting situation. The cavalry had to be called in and I had a team of mother, father, and brother all around me. Between joking and laughing, my father used as much delicacy possible to cut the comb out of my hair as my brother took continuous Polaroid shots of my pain and embarrassment.

In eighth grade, I was really into things relating to the army. God only knows why. My interest sparked to a point that I actually made my dad take me to an army/navy store to buy a real pair of camouflage pants. So naturally, I also wanted to have my hair cut boy short. I definitely thought I was hot stuff and loved it then. Now when I look back on pictures I think, "Dear Lord! Why did my parents let me do that?!" Even the Jesika of today, I do not think, could pull off a style like that.

I didn't have my hair cut again until my senior year of high school. By then, I was dating my future husband who loved my long, flowing, brown hair. But I had told him that it was set in stone that I would be cutting my hair right after senior portraits to donate it to Locks of Love. Despite his begging and pleading the day came. We tied my hair back, my mom snipped it off and I was back in second grade again.

My hair had grown a little during my first semester in college and my grandmother and I were going to Paris right after Christmas. She wanted to spruce up for our trip with new haircuts and manicures. By now I was itching for curly hair. The hairdresser was practically blown away by my request for a perm stating that she hardly does perms anymore. She insisted that I color my hair instead and I insisted that my father would kill me if I did.

The perm was nice and actually the most manageable hairstyle I had, however, I was always afraid to do more with it because of fear of looking like a poodle gone crazy.

After my perm was completely gone, I grew my hair long again, but not Locks of Love long. In May of that year, my grandfather died, which was a shock for all of my family. I was finishing my last year of college and about a month after graduation I went for an even shorter bob (but stayed clear of the boy short hair!) A few weeks after my haircut, my uncle died, which was an even greater shock and upset for my family.

Again I grew my hair out, this time with a wedding in mind. By the wedding, my hair was about shoulder length, long enough for the cutesy up do I requested. About 100 bobby pins and six months of marriage later, I got another bob.

This hair cut led me through about three more years and three completely different careers, the final career being in education.

After my first year of teaching, I died my hair blond. It was one of those I've-always-wanted-to-do-this choices which had everyone I ever knew asking me (after they realized who I was) "So why did you go with blond??" And my answer was always, "Well, it was blond, black, or another perm. So I let Lance choose and he chose blond." Most people kind of just nodded, not sure what that means really, but usually the conversation ended with a comment that it looked good. Of course I did live through some teasing at home. My little brother's first reaction was, "Oh, Hannah Montana!" and my father alternated between calling me a surfer for the first month or so and saying that I'd given up my Sicilian roots (pun not intended) for my hair.

About nine months later, for my older brother's wedding, I set my long blond hair free and went with another bob. I know it might seem like I have a crush on the Bob....but honestly I just love to mix it up. And having such a relationship with the Bob has caused a lot of scrutiny over time, especially from the women in my life who think ladies should only have long hair. My grandmother (who mind you, in her twenties had a different hair style every week) once said to me after I cut my hair, "You cut your hair again??? Oh well, it will grow back."

While she certainly meant her comment as more of an insult to my short hair, this is basically my whole outlook on hair in general. Chop it off, grow it short, shave it off--eventually it grows back, so what's the fuss?

(By the way, I have never shaved it off. This is a hair style I still would be willing to try, however, I would need to work in a profession where it really didn't matter if I had a buzz cut. I'm thinking teaching is just not it...)

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