I’ve never been one to shy away from cutting my hair. Ever since an incident involving “playing hair” with my sister and her brand new kindergarten scissors, I’ve had the attitude that hair always grows back. My standard routine is to not cut it for six months, have it brush my shoulders, and cut it off to chin length. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Then I met this guy. And I fell hard for him. And he asked me not to renew my teaching contracts and move across the country with him. I did what any normal girl would do and started perusing bridal magazines. Visions of cascading curls, intricate braids, and sweeping up-dos danced in my head. And then we eloped. And those visions got shoved into the deepest recesses of my mind. Where they evidently took root and started creeping from the crevasses.
When we started planning our weddinged ceremony, I took a fairly relaxed view of most things. We’re already married, this is just a celebration, I’m planning it from across the world – I just want most things simple and easy. There were two big exceptions to my laid-back, anything goes attitude. The dress and my hair.
I was home in Texas back in May and wanted to go dress shopping, it was somewhere around the time that I realized that I wouldn’t get to that I decided I needed to dye my hair back to its “natural” color. After all, there was only fifteen or so months before the wedding and I needed my hair to be perfect for that. Haircuts were non-existent. I was rocking a long, straight across, no layers cut that I barely let get trimmed every four to six months. I couldn’t risk a hairstylist over here messing up and ruining my whole wedding.
And then I got bangs right before our cruise. I had already figured out at my standard rate of growth that they’d be more than long enough again before the wedding. I’m only surprised it took as long as it did for that to sound as neurotic as it is. I wouldn’t let the guy put layers in, I didn’t trust him, he couldn’t ruin my perfect long hair.
My perfect long hair that I absolutely hated on the inside. My perfect long hair that carried the weight of how this wedding was supposed to be. My perfect long hair that carried my lingering disappointment that I didn’t get a wedding “the right way” the first time around. My perfect long hair that was braided into a noose.
I sat in a hairstylist’s chair this past Saturday. I opened my iPod up to a picture of a cute, layered cut that made use of sweeping side bangs, and distinct layers of hair to flip around the face. I smiled at this guy who barely spoke English and I told him, “I trust you.” As the hair sat, falling from my head, in varying lengths from two to ten inches, I felt a burden lifting.
I don’t need perfect, cascading curls to have an amazing wedding day, much less an amazing marriage. I don’t need to torture myself with long, boring hair for the sake of some vision softly creeping. I just need to be myself – the girl who likes playing with her hair, having fun, and taking risks.
I came home and dyed my hair. I’m not sure what it will look like on my wedding day and I actually don’t care about that. The important part is to be true to myself during this process. I’ve cut my hair free and with it I’ve found the freedom to let go of a much heavier burden.