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Keep Things In Perspective

What’s the opposite of a superpower? Would that be a curse? Well today I was reminded of the curse that I have had since I was a young child - the curse of never getting a good haircut.


That’s not exactly true. I have had exactly 2 haircuts that I have been 100% happy about, and they were done by a stylist in a different state from where I lived, which is why it has only happened twice. Usually I’m pretty satisfied with what the stylist has done, but often times, when they have finished and I look into the mirror, it’s a disaster.


One time I brought in a ponytail extension that I was planning to wear for a special event and I asked the stylist to match the color, which was very close to my natural color but I had some grays to cover up. She colored it the completely wrong color and when I put on the ponytail it looked ridiculous. I tried another salon about a year later, with the same ponytail and same request, and this stylist colored my hair a shade of orange only previously seen on Bozo the Clown. I had to wear a hat for two days until I could get into a special color-corrective place. I’ve had stylists cut my hair too short, I’ve had them leave it too long, I’ve had them cut bangs when I’ve clearly stated I’m growing them out, the list goes on and on and on. The worst one of all was when I went to an extremely expensive salon in downtown Boston, after saving my money and looking forward to it for months, only to end up bawling my eyes out when I saw myself because of what the stylist had decided to do, regardless of what I had asked for.


It’s kind of strange that this keeps happening to me, especially since never once have I asked for something that I would consider complicated or challenging or unique. For this reason, I have never had “my hairstylist” - the kind that people trust to know what to do and that become friends that people keep for many years. I find I have to keep looking around in the vain hope that I will find someone who will be reliable to listen to what I have to say and then have the capability to actually do it.


Today was no exception. I went to someone completely random for a cut and color touch-up and after asking for two inches off the bottom, some long layers, and a color touch up on the grays, I came out with about 4 inches off the bottom and color around my face that is completely different from the natural color that is covering the rest of my head. I don’t know why I’m surprised honestly. It’s just my curse rearing it’s ugly head (no pun intended) again.


I hadn’t had my hair cut in almost a year and so I was really looking forward to this appointment, only to be utterly and completely disappointed yet again. When I left the salon, of course after paying way more than things like this should cost, I wasn’t sad and teary like I’ve been in the past. I was MAD.


Mad that this keeps happening to me. Mad that I was going to have to go home and rewash and style my hair for the Valentine’s Day/Dating Anniversary dinner my husband and I had planned because of how terrible it looked. Mad that I had spent my hard earned money on something that turned out so abysmally. Mad that no matter how clearly I stated my needs they were not listened to, AGAIN. These thoughts kept going around and around my head and I had worked myself into quite a fury when I stopped off at the post office on my way home.


I got in line, still kind of muttering to myself about the injustices of the world and my hair’s role in it, when I looked up at the woman in front of me. She was sporting a haircut that was gray and white and about 1/2 inch long. She also walked with a limp and wore hearing aids, so while it’s possible that her hairstyle was by her own choice, I made an educated guess that it wasn’t.


In that instant I remembered the family friend who was diagnosed with breast cancer last week and was talking to my relative about wigs because she was about to lose all of her hair with the rigorous round of chemo she was about to start before her surgery and subsequent radiation treatments. I also thought about the many women I have known who have not only lost their hair but their lives to a similar diagnosis, and I felt the tears start to brim in my eyes at the thought of them, as well as the thought of me and how utterly ridiculous I was acting.


Thank You Universe, for that much needed perspective exactly when I needed it.


I love the scene in Fleabag Season 2, episode 5 where she says to the hairstylist with conviction, “Hair is EVERYTHING! I know it shouldn’t be…BUT IT IS!”


It is. In many instances, it is. But it shouldn’t be. A bad hair day, or a bad hair few weeks, is never something to get super upset about. Especially because hair grows. No matter how bad it looks, it instantly starts growing again so it is never, ever permanent.


We can apply this to things besides our hair too. Did we make an embarrassing mistake at work? Luckily time marches on so it will be forgotten soon enough. Did we spend money that we shouldn’t have, on something we regret? It happens, and hopefully we will keep going to work and make more money to cover that expense. Did we go down the wrong path in life and make some unfortunate decisions? There is always a new day in which we can forge a new path, go through a different door, and make amends to help us start anew.


It’s so important to keep a healthy perspective about things in life. It’s all in how we choose to look at them. Even when things make us angry or disappointed or frustrated or sad, we can still make the choice to rise above them and not let them ruin our days.


We have the power over what is going to affect us in our daily lives. Take ahold of that power, and choose happiness, no matter what our hair looks like, no matter what our bodies look like, no matter what we have to do, who has disappointed us, or what chapter of life we might be in on a given day.


In the meantime, do you have a good hair stylist you can recommend?

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