In a world that tries its best to pressure me to conform, I’m going to make an attempt to buck society’s ideals about what constitutes beauty and aging gracefully.
A box of Clairol, a lift here and a tuck there might help shed years off my appearance and give me a more youthful look, but who can afford to maintain it for years on end? I, for one, am tired of shelling out dough to curtail the natural aging process, and that includes buying hair dye or visiting the hair salon every month to cover up the gray. Instead, I’m going to try to allow my beautiful, shimmering silver strands to win the race as they quickly outpace my rich dark chocolate-brown hair.
You heard me right; I’ve decided to try to embrace the real me by going al natural. Some of my friends have called me coo-coo, but that’s OK by me. Call me crazy if you will but this is a change I’m going to permit to progress at its own pace. That’s right. I’m going to let nature take its course–or attempt to–even when I start to look like a member of the skunk family.
What possessed me to give this going-gray a whirl? Well, I am feeling very blessed to be able to walk into this season of my life. Growing old just doesn’t scare me anymore. I look at those younger than me who’ve lost their lives battling cancer, stroke, heart disease, or in accidents or natural disasters. They would have loved the opportunity to grow old. I myself have uttered, “Getting old sucks!” But honestly, getting old is an honor that too many never get to see to fruition. When my brother passed away nearly two years ago from complications after a stroke, I realized how truly fragile life is and how quickly it can change without a moment’s notice. Sitting by his bedside for weeks as life slowly evaporated for him, I realized we would not grow old together. In his passing, he bequeathed me with a new appreciation for life, which includes the last chapters where we grow gray, gain a few more facial lines and aren’t as agile or perky.
So, instead of succumbing to a world that pressures women to dye their gray hair in order to look young and maintain beauty, I am joining the numerous other courageous women like Jamie Lee Curtis and Diane Keaton who’ve proclaimed freedom from the box of hair dye to rock out their gray hair. Don’t get me wrong, I am a bit anxious about it. But I’ve been inspired by so many other women who have made the transition and are loving their look.
I keep telling myself that I am more than just a head of hair. I remind myself I am a woman with a host of other awesome qualities that God ordained to me. What truly matters in this life, I whisper to my inner self, is not how I can successfully turn back time, reverse aging or cheat death. It’s about becoming the best version of myself, accepting who I am in Christ Jesus and learning to love every part of me, including my silver strands.
Anyone else out there making the transition? I’d love to hear how you arrived at your decision to embrace the gray and the challenges you faced along the way.