Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Hairdo That Says It All

Namaste, fellow Soul Pilgrims!

I recently got drastic with my hair.  Very drastic.  In fact, you might say it is dreadful, what I did.  And you'd be right!  After research and soul search, I decided to take the plunge - and transform my head of beautiful, long, curly tresses into dreadlocks.  That's right:  DREADLOCKS. Those funky-looking, messy, snake-like twists of hairy strangeness!

Quick - what comes to your mind?  Besides the obvious, that I must have lost mine.  I mean, when you come across people with dreads, what is your immediate thought about them?   I'll tell you what I have always thought when encountering a dreadhead:  That they march to their own drummer, flout convention, and simply do not care what others think of them.  And let's not forget that other small bit about totally telling Fashion Dictators to get stuffed!  I confess to loving all of those notions, but for me there was more to the story.

If you have followed my posts from Day 1, you are familiar with my spiritual odyssey, having left behind my ultra conservative views and embraced a much larger philosophy.  My views on God have expanded, my fears have largely subsided, and my judgments against my fellow man continue to drop away.  I much prefer this open-minded person; this imperfect person who thrives on questioning and seeking, who refuses to ever again be told WHAT or HOW to think.  This is the state I find myself in now, in my early 40s.  And it was with this in mind that I decided to say "Goodbye!" to my crowning glory - at least in conventional terms.  My hair is still all there, but it looks anything but glorious at this point.

Only a month in, my dreads are still considered babies.  They are wild and unruly and thoroughly disobedient.  I chose to do them myself (with the help of a dear friend & my patient family) and have opted to go natural with them:  No wax or products to help them lock up faster or "look neater."  To me, the journey my dreads go through is symbolic of my own journey through this life.  We all start somewhere, and it takes time to grow and mature!  I would never disrespect those who choose to go to a salon and have their dreads professionally done - that is part of their own journey.  For me, however, part of my own journey is letting go of the frantic need to keep up appearances.  The day I did my dreads was the day I took myself out of the rat race of physical beauty.  It seems crazy to me that in my 40s I am expected to try and look like I did in my 20s, etc.  That whole "cougar thing" just was not working for me.  Happily, it would seem that dreading my hair and having it look totally weird, wild, crazy, funky, and messy DOES work for me!  Whodathunkit? 

Kudos go out here to my delightful and exceedingly patient husband, who has put up with so many changes from me over the last 5 years.  When a friend recently asked how he could stand my new hairdo, he simply smiled, shrugged, and replied: "It's Janice!  A month from now she will be doing something else crazy."   After a mere 17 years of marriage, I think he finally understands me!

So I am ending 2011 on a very happy note.  I am pleased with who I am and who I am becoming.  I am thankful for all of the love in my life.  I am grateful for another year of good health for me and my loved ones!  It pleases me that I am able to be more and more myself, and feel so comfortable doing it. 

"We will open the book.  Its pages are blank.  We are going to put words on them ourselves.  The book is called Opportunity, and its first chapter is New Year's Day." 
~ Edith Lovejoy Pierce

May 2012 bring you growth, love, triumph, abundance, and inner peace.  Thank you for sharing my journey.

-Rev. Jan