Things I Love About Me: My Hair

Source: ffffound.com via Tori on Pinterest

 

One day recently I was telling a close girlfriend that I was having a rough morning and I didn’t know if I even could muster the strength it took to brush my hair. She replied “I say DON’T brush your hair as a statement of power and control.” So I didn’t! It’s amazing how empowering hair can be! Another girlfriend recently wrote about how the “crazy hair” she used to have back in the day didn’t measure up with the modern mom image that her hairstylist held of her. Hair drives our identity!

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I really love my hair.  It’s easy to deal with and it makes me feel pretty. I don’t spend a lot of time messing with it.  I’m the brush and go girl – and have no problem showing up places with wet hair.

I have almost always had medium-long hair. I can’t ever remember a time when my hair was much shorter than my shoulders. I have also always had a double cowlick and widow’s peak that caused me great suffering at the hands of verbal bullies for most of my adolescence. (Looking back, it’s not like I was some hideous creature, but kids can be mean and will find ANYthing to pick on you for.)

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I haven’t dyed my hair in years.  There was a time when I had what I like to call “blonde disease”.  (The unconscious process of getting blonder and blonder with each touch-up.)  I gave it up realizing that there would be a time later in my life when I’d probably want to dye the gray away constantly, and thought I’d give myself a break for a decade or so.  Lately I’ve been noticing the little patch of gray hair I have has been growing.  This morning looking in the rear view mirror as the sun came through the open roof of my car, I noticed that my gray was growing and glistening in the sun.  I’ve been resistant to dye it again.  My awesome hairstylist, who’s been cutting my hair for over a decade,  always comments on my caramel colors.  (Walter at Lavish is actually an infusion of good feelings all around, he’s awesome and totally worth the cost to help me boost my self-image.)

I don’t really get my hair cut more than every 4-12 months, sometimes creating a “cousin it” situation.  For the past year or so, I’ve been letting my hair grow back out more, and only getting a small little trim every now and then with the intention of trying to have enough for donating to Locks of Love.  When I started my LOL project, I never knew how hard growing 8 inches below my shoulders would be!  It’s like two steps forward and one step back every few months with the growing and the cutting! Recently, with all of the challenges in my life, I wanted something I could control and have power over, so I’ve been thinking of just giving up and drastically chopping it.  There’s too much baggage in the timeline of the hair.  I want to let it go.  I’ve picked up the phone to make a hair appointment a couple times in the last few weeks, but not gotten through or gotten distracted, which is a good thing, because I think I’ve changed my mind!

I saw this picture of me from an event I did with my goddess girlfriends last weekend and really loved it. In fact, the whole series from the whole night made me feel really positively about myself. I found myself thinking “dang, I look pretty in these!” I realized that one of my favorite thing about the pictures is my long hair. Maybe it’s not baggage in the growing strands, maybe it’s strength?  I don’t think it matters right now, but I do think I’m going to keep my hair a little bit longer.  I don’t think I’m ready to give up on Locks of Love, or my long wavy hair.  I love my hair.  It helps me love me more.

It’s called SELF esteem – the esteem of YOURSELF.

I’ve been struggling with my self-image lately. Sometimes, I love almost everything about myself, but sometimes I don’t like myself very much at all. (“Typical Gemini” is what my friend Art would say, but I think it’s just typical human.) Someone once said to me that I try really hard at life. (I think it was a compliment.) I tend to be a little obsessed with self-improvement and trying to be the most perfect me that I can be, and most of the time think that I’m doing a pretty good job. (Working on being okay with “not perfect” has been part of that self-improvement process.)

Lately some incredibly challenging adult situations have sent me reeling and questioning myself and my decisions. “I must just not be good enough” is the voice in my head. Sometimes followed by “what the hell is wrong with you Tori Nichelle – be different, be better, be right.” (I sort of feel like I’m going a little crazy, but that’s another post all together.) While most of the time I think I’m super-duper awesome, at other times I find myself unsure if I have value to others, and am unsure if I’m deserving of the life I want. Thankfully in a hail storm of anger and disappointment falling on my head the last few months, there have been an incredible amount of cheerleaders trying to be louder than the voice in my head to remind me that I am deserving. It’s had me contemplating a lot about why I can’t own my life, and why I rely on others so heavily to build up my self-esteem. Part of the goal of this space is to give me a place to revel in how much I love myself – to list and brag and be proud. I want to fill these digital pages with reminders that will soon be a tangible collective of “me” things to lean on when I start to doubt myself. I want to find my way back to loving all of myself, and to find constant value in me despite the situation around me.

This morning it has me thinking about this clip. I LOVE Katt Williams special “The Pimp Chronicles Part 1”. It’s less comedy and more motivational speech with a bunch of funny in it. I will stop channel surfing 90% of the time when it’s rerunning on Comedy Central, even though it’s much less funny when it’s bleeped every few seconds. It makes me feel good every time – and is filled with tiny little nuggets like this one. Fun little reminders that situations and other people shouldn’t influence how you view yourself.

Today, I choose to say that I’m awesome. I’m deserving, and I’m in control. I get to make the choices that best suit me. Life is long, but you only get one – so live it full and life it loud. Life is hard, things don’t go my way, things change and challenges come. But none of those challenges change that I’m awesome. I will (try to) no longer let the “trifecta of disaster” rule how much value I see in myself. I’m going forward in honesty, integrity, intention, gratitude, love, internal strength and purpose. I will have what I want and need in this life – because I think I’m pretty amazing – even if not everyone thinks so.

BEST QUOTE EVER: “Not everyone is going to like you Tori – Do you want to be awesome to Mitt Romney?!”

Uhm, no. No I don’t. I just want to be awesome to me. (I’m pretty damn sure that my hippie “feeding and educating a healthy society” liberal ways aren’t exactly what he’s looking for in a best friend, and I really like those ways about me.)