Putting on the Blues

 

Is there anything as wonderful and life-fulfilling as getting your hair done? A few things spring to mind, like newborn babies, or, maybe, puppy breath. But getting one’s hair done is right up there toward the top of the list. I’m not much of a girly girl. I mostly bebop around in jeans, t-shirt, and my trusty Keens. I don’t wear makeup on a day-to-day basis. I don’t generally “fix” my hair; I’m more of a wash and air dry kind of person. But … I love getting my hair done. It’s like I go into the salon feeling kind of drab and worn-down, and I come out with brand new hair! Hair that is pretty! Hair that I love!!

It’s sorcery. This is the only explanation. No, really.

I love my hair stylist. She is a beautiful person, inside and out. She is interesting and funny and tells the best stories. I always come away feeling like she’s more than the person who does my hair. After sitting there and laughing with her and sharing stories and funny jokes for a few hours, I come away feeling like I’ve been hanging out with a friend. And also, she never laughs at me or acts like I’m a freak when I want to do “crazy” stuff to my hair. I’ve had a lot of experience with people (my parents, my husband, other stylists, strangers on the street … yadda, yadda, yadda) trying to talk me out of stuff. Or telling me that I don’t really want to do the thing that I want to do. I don’t know what it is about me, but I guess I just bring this out in people or something.

For pretty much my whole life, I have wanted two things from my hair, color-wise. I was platinum blonde as a child, and, over the years, this color kind of darkened up to something between a honey blonde and an ashy blonde. The more gray I go, the ashier it seems to get. Did I want blonde hair? No. I wanted my hair to be black. And I wanted it to be blue. Even as a kid, I wanted black hair. Or blue hair. I never told anyone this. I knew my parents wouldn’t react well to it. They would laugh it off like it was a big joke. I know they wouldn’t be doing it to be mean. But still, when you’re serious about something, few things hurt as much as people laughing it off like it’s a big joke. That makes you feel small and silly and … well, small.

So, about three months ago, I rather timidly confessed to my stylist that I had always wanted to have blue hair. I was really nervous about this because I expected her to give me “the look” (you know, the one that clearly says “you’re insane and not in a fun and cute way”) and, then, try to talk me out of it. Or, maybe, tell me, flat-out, that this isn’t what I wanted to do at all. But, no! Her only reply was, “Cool! That will look great with the black. Let’s do it!” It. Was. AWESOME!! I am sure she has no idea how wonderful, exciting, and empowering that was for me. I know it sounds silly, but I have major self-esteem issues. Something as small as having someone take my wants and ideas seriously isn’t a small thing at all to me. It’s HUGE!

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I started out small, just to make sure I liked the blue. For my first outing with this color, we added in some peek-a-boo highlights. She tucked them in underneath the black color around my face. It gave me a chance to make sure I loved the color, but, to the rest of the world, my hair looked just straight black. It turned out that I LOVED them. I found myself constantly pulling my hair back so my peek-a-boos showed all the time. They were more like, “Oh, Hello Theres” instead of peek-a-boos. After that, there was no going back.

Blue is my power color. I love blue. I love it in my clothes. I love it on my nails. If I could dunk myself in a color, it would be blue. I can’t explain it, but this color just makes me freaking happy. It’s like, if there is enough blue in my world, the universe seems right somehow.

Yesterday, I went back to the salon to spice up my ‘do. It had been about a month since my last coloring, and all of my blues had completely faded out. This time, my stylist decided to do two colors of blue again, but more highlights all over, instead of kind of hiding them in amongst the black. Now, my hair is a vibrant, beautiful, sort of “electric” blue. It doesn’t show up much indoors, but once I’m out in the sun … POW!! I mean, it’s there. It is in-your-face, hide-the-children, spank-your-mama THERE. (OK, so don’t spank your mama. Because that’s just wrong. But, you know …)

I didn’t know what to expect, so I wasn’t ready for the full impact of it when I first saw it in the mirror. Oh. My. Gosh. It is so freaking fantastic. I loved it immediately, even under the dimmer lights in the salon. But my stylist knows me so well. I feel like she totally “gets” me, which might be a scary thing for her. She grabbed her mirror and told me to follow her outside, so I could see it in the sun. What can I say? There were tears. Happy, happy, happy tears.

So yeah. My hair is blue. And I’m a happy, happy panda.

 

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