Somewhere in my mid-forties, I had an awakening. I realized I was becoming my mother. It happened innocently enough. The bathroom was steamy from the shower and I turned to dry my hair sans clothing. At a glance, I could see that certain things were distorted, and not where they used to be. Thinking it was an optical illusion caused by the cloud on the mirror, I grabbed a towel and wiped at the glass. Unfortunately, this only brought things into clearer focus. It's shocking when that first revelation hits that you are--or at least your body is--aging. It was like sliding down a muddy hillside after a hard rain and trying to gain purchase to get back to the top.
And, so, the mad scramble to hang onto my all-too-quickly fleeting youth began. Now, we all know that without the benefits of silicone, botox, and other potentially poisonous pick-me-ups, there's not much we can do to change our shifting landscape. So I seized on the one thing I could most easily control--the grey beginning to show in my hair. I tried three or four different shades of do-it-yourself hair color before settling on one that, at least to my aging eyes, looked 'natural.' And then I religiously shampooed my youth back into my hair once a month. Then once every three weeks. Then... Well, too much of a good thing might not be such a good thing afterall.
This summer as I was preparing for a vacation on Dauphin Island, I studied my hair closely. I rationalized that (a) I didn't really care much how my hair looked while vacationing on an island where I wouldn't be sunbathing anyway and didn't know a soul, and (b) the sun would only wash out the color. I decided to forego my feeble attempts to hold back the hands of time and go au naturale. Heck, in a few weeks I'd know what color my hair truly is.
Fast forward six weeks. Now I know. Let's just say I have more 'natural highlights' than my once-natural ash brown tresses. My own jury is still out on the to-color-or-not-to-color question. But I keep getting compliments from other people on my hair. The best argument for leaving it alone came when I made a recent trip to Pittsburgh and ran into a woman I'd not seen for a year or two. We chatted and she gave me a once over, starting with my hair, then said, "You've lost weight."
I haven't. My conclusion: The hair color was making my butt look big! They really should include that in the warning label.