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I’ve known for a while that I’m (not so) slowly going gray. My first grey hairs started popping up at 24 or 25, and have hurried on at a rapid pace. It went from finding a few short, spiky little grays at the top of my head at first, and now there are gray hairs that are as long as any other hairs on my head. I could pick up a little handful of hair and find three or four grays mixed in, easily. It’s happening, and I’ve known it’s happening.
I shouldn’t be surprised, considering my mom started going gray in her mid to late twenties. I have fond memories of laying on a blanket in our backyard, and my mom paying me a quarter a piece to pluck them from her head. I could have gotten rich there, if my mom hadn’t decided to start dyeing her hair, putting an end to my money-making scheme.
But as my own hair started to fade, I decided I would take a different tactic. I was going to embrace the silver in my hair. I would see it as a badge of honor and a signal of wisdom and experience. When my daughter asked why there were hairs on my head with no color, I pointed out how they shimmered in the light, and said how proud I was that I was old enough now to have sparkly hair. The grays were coming in at a manageable rate and I was ready to start the slow slide into silver.
And then I got a sunburn on the part in my hair. Has that ever happened to you? You know, first it’s red and achy, and then it PEELS, and it looks like you have an unbearable amount of dandruff, and it’s date night, and you’re like, “Of course my scalp has to peel off on date night.” So you say, “no biggie, I’ll part my hair on the other side.”
And then I saw it.
My entire- well not ENTIRE, but darn near entire- head of hair on that side is GRAY. Like, there’s no hiding it, more gray-hair-than-brown-hair, straight up old-lady-status gray. I’ve been walking around thinking I’m at like 10% grayness, and then all it takes is one shift of the hairline to discover that I am RACING towards complete salt-and-pepper status. I feel like I’ve been tricked. I had no idea that old age was as close as the other side of my head.
So here I am, trying to decide what to do about my impending doom. All those beautiful euphemisms are heading RIGHT out the door. That complete nonsense about my beautiful sparkles?? EFF. THAT. Pass me the Clairol. I ain’t going down without a fight.