Hair obsessions and compulsions
I don’t really know why I did it. Except that I wanted to.
There is no worthy cause like locks of love (has my hair ever been long enough to donate??). No statement about society, women, body image, sexuality, race or politics. My awkwardness in the face of comments (even nice ones) makes the idea of doing it for attention laughable. I hate being awkward. And it’s not like I just really wanted to have the same haircut as my son.
But I do now. I buzzed my hair off.
There’s nothing like trying to grow your hair—making a goal out of it—that makes you really want to cut it. So four weeks ago, after stewing (obsessing more like) over the idea of it for a couple of nights (thanks to amelia and G for stirring it up in the first place), I grabbed some scissors and started cutting the parts that were bugging me the most. Can I just say how good it felt? I have had a (wonderful, talented, professional) hairstylist giving me the most amazing haircuts for the last 6 years. I hadn’t touched my own hair with scissors (except just barely) since I found her. But this night I did, after everyone was asleep, and it was simply cathartic. I went to bed peacefully after a good percentage of my hair was in the wastebasket. The next day I warned my husband and kids before I got the clippers out, put a 1/2 inch guard on them, and began to buzz. And when it was gone, my husband gladly touched up the edges and spots I had missed. It was fun, exciting, and free of charge.
I did it once before, in college. Kind of on a dare. So what if I say I did it this time just to see if I could get away with it again. Out of vanity—to prove I can be beautiful without hair (because honestly, I’ve never had great long hair). To show myself how much confidence I have (my husband would laugh at this one—he’s always the one listening to my self-doubts). Was it because I was coming out of a winter funk? Perhaps an outward manifestation of hidden suffering. Maybe it was just to jolt some normal people out of their normal stupor. Curiosity—I wanted to see if it would bother anyone and who. Perhaps I was trying to add some mystery to my image. Or to say “look how much I don’t care about my looks.” And what about pure shock value?
Whatever my reasons, I’m happy with the results. How liberating not to have to think about my hair (though I think about my scalp more than I used to). But, I put earrings in for the first time in years because I wanted to feel more feminine. And I have been trying to dress less boyish. Really this is all just to say that I have really, really short hair. And I’m just as self-conscious as the next person.