Hair. What in the world does hair have to do with being unemployed? Lots. Today I was dying my hair -thank you great grandma for that white hair gene- and had 35 minutes to think about what has happened over the past years in terms of my hair.
After my Hot Hubbie lost his job, I noticed the chunks of hair that were ending up tangled in my fingers and clogging the drain during my showers. I felt like it would never stop and I would be permanently bald. I suddenly found myself trying to style my hair to cover the bald spots along my hairline. I panicked and had my Wonderful Neighbor chop 12 inches off my hair into a short chin length bob (we swapped babysitting for a free haircut). I thought, in my irrational panic, that cutting it off would make the hair less heavy and would be less likely to fall out. It was a stupid thought, but at least the mass in the shower drain would be visibly smaller with the shorter strands. Eventually the hair loss slowed down and months later I noticed that it had begun to grow back, in little fuzzy wisps that would not lay flat no matter how much gel, mousse, or hair spray I used. Every now and then, as we cycle through the ups and downs of unemployment, I notice that my hair will begin to fall out again, but at least my “hair history” says that it will grow back again.
As I was slopping the hair dye on today (and getting more dye on my face than on my hair), I was reminiscing about the time when I could go to the salon and spend the $80 to have someone do this for me. At least then I did not have to stay sequestered inside for a few days until the dye on my face faded enough so that I could be seen in public. wow-$80 every 4-6 weeks? Did I really spend that much money on my hair? At the time getting my hair professionally dyed (and highlighted) did not seem like a luxury (have you seen my grey roots), but now it is a luxury I have not indulged in for 3 years. I have given up the beautiful “face-framing” highlights (and a little social life while the dye on my face fades) to prolong our savings.
And then I remembered a complement that was given to me recently. Some one said, “your hair looks like the girl’s who is getting married to that Prince in England”. It brought it all back around. I am okay, in fact, I am GREAT, without having to spend so much money on my hair. Who knew that I would say that one day? Not me.
So what has my hair taught me over the past 3 years?
1. Stress can physically manifest itself-sometimes in the strangest ways.
2. Wonderful Neighbors are indispensable (she has rarely asked me to “pay up” on our exchanges-I owe her big time!)
3. The little things can add up-like $80 salon visits and $20 barber visits-when you are trying to make your dollar stretch.
4. Who needs highlights ?!? (didn’t you know, brunette is the new blond!)
5. No matter how hard you scrub, hair dye on skin will NOT come off!
6. A wonderful complement, can put everything back in perspective; I don’t need to spend the money on the professionals.