Hanging On To Hair

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Strange as it sounds, yes, I’ve been hanging on to my hair.  My story may seem vain at first glance, but please ladies, hear me out.

Like so many others, I’ve always struggled with self image and confidence. After decades of makeup experiments and style flops, my hair was the only area that I actually loved (sad but true). Even more so when I was pregnant and even post baby, I was always complimented on my hair. It was long, thick and fortunately I was able to style it decently. As a grown woman, I allowed my hair to define me.  No, it wasn’t naturally luxurious or glamorous, it took loads of time and work.  But it was work that I had time for prior to the birth of my daughter. Shortly after her arrival, it became clear that I wouldn’t have that kind of extra time for a while. I wasn’t able to wash it as often, let alone style it. And as my daughter became an active toddler, my hair was tossed in a bun daily, which had me wondering why I was hanging on to this hair?

As my mom style finally began to define itself (relaxed tees, jeans and flats), I realized that my long, luxurious locks were a thing of the past. Not only that, but my strands were holding me back. I hated that I couldn’t just toss up my hair and roll out the door (at the pace of my kiddo). And after my daughter expressed anxiety over losing her hair during her first trim, my mind was made up. I couldn’t allow her to view hair, makeup, or clothing as an important piece of who a woman is. I want her to see them for who they are and not how long their hair is. I know, she’s only 3 and maybe too young to fully get it.  But, she definitely imitates others and is very curious, so it can’t hurt.

The woman I was 3 years ago has definitely evolved since becoming a mom, and my hair was such a small part of that big transition.  The change as a whole was so much more than I ever expected.  The pre-baby me would have laughed at the thought of staying in on Saturday nights or skipping a shower. I would have snagged the 4 inch stilettos instead of the memory foam flats at the shoe store. After losing the 8 inches of hair, I feel free, comfortable and more momish than before.  Proof that change is good, ladies.

-Kristin S.

If It Ain’t Broke… It Will Be Eventually!

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“What we have to learn, we rarely choose” -George Michael

The theme of being broken has been evident in my loved ones lives lately.  I am certainly not exempt from this phenomenon of needing to be “broken,” “set” and “healing,” this is why I felt compelled to share how this process is an essential element of being human.  Anything that lives, breathes and grows has to “feed” what is keeping it alive and “starve” what no longer serves its purpose to live and grow.  Let me start with one example…

My seven year old son fractured his finger while playing football (poor boy’s got his mother’s agility).  When we went to the doctor to find out what would be needed to heal this injury, my son’s doctor assessed that he would need to re-break it so that it could be set in a manner that would allow for the optimal healing.  This physical process fell in line with the trend I started to notice in many of my relationships.   As I matured, some relationships needed to be broke, then set to allow me (and anyone involved) to grow into the mature beings we were meant to be.

Then as I talked to my closest friends (most of them being sisters), colleagues, and acquaintances I noticed that pattern in all of our lives.  Whether it be a relationship, a job, our health, our religion/faith, or even at the core of who we thought we are, there will come a time that it (whatever it is) will be “broken” or taken apart to make way for the new and improved version of ourselves.  At that moment, we can either choose to hold on to our old way of thinking or allow ourselves to break, just a little, so that we can heal and grow.

There are examples everyday of this process, but I wanted to share another specific example in my day to day life.  Part of my job is outreach and education about hospice services.  I was giving a presentation to a high school class and during the question and answer period of my presentation, an astute student asked me, “Has your religious/spiritual beliefs changed as a result of your job in hospice?”  I explained to this wonderful class not only have my own beliefs changed as a result of working with people who are facing the end of their life, I explained that their beliefs better change as well.  That is a universal truth for us all…we either change or lose the opportunity to grow into the amazing person each one of us was meant to be.  If you keep refusing to accept the challenge to accept the being broken, just for a well, it becomes harder and harder to start growth in that area of your life.

The reason I bring this up is to help all of us pass through the feelings of being broken.  It starts early in life with friends that don’t want to hang out with us anymore.  Later in middle school, then high school when we fit in certain places and don’t in other areas.  The growth opportunities, first loves, friendships, acceptance/rejection, are so new and feel like they will never pass.  I write this so that you know that it will pass, being broken and when it does, be proud that you are better for that experience.

-Cheryl L.