I had it all (shaved? shaven?) off.
I called my friend Ilona and left a message asking her to come up and shave it for me. But as I left the message, I got that choky-emotional hitch in my voice. So I decided to just go and walk into a hair salon and do it.
The stylist started by trying to convince me there were other options and I didn’t have to shave my hair off.
“I came HERE because I do NOT want to discuss my decision making. I can just go now and have a friend do it if you can’t handle it.” I use my deep, dark, meany voice.
Leave it to me to pick a stylist who is a young mother of a 3 1/3 year old AND who just finished a year of weekly chemo-like treatments for Hepatitis C. Apparently the treatments she went through didn’t work and she has to do it all again.
But when the tears come to both her and her receptionist’s eyes as I’m paying the bill, I get a surge of MEAN BREAST CANCER CHEMO WOMAN. I can feel my face settling into that stern don’t-fuck-with-me-don’t-even-talk-to-me defensive barrier.
I’m not ready to go home.
So I walk around the mall a bit. And then I go to a bakery. And to Starbuck’s for a pumpkin spice latte. Then I come home and almost bite my husband when he tries to tell me I look good and wants to kiss me.
Then, I get over it.
We all got over it. Delphine gave a small sigh at the crew cut, but she thinks the hat is OK. Paul still wants hugs.
And I feel really really different — but I still feel like I know the older looking, powerful, tall, athletic woman looking back at me in the mirror. She’s definitely part of me — and she deserves her turn as the physical representation of self.