For many, many years, I’ve wanted to dye my hair a “not seen in nature” color. I always put it off, due to being too scared.
What if people would see me? What if they gave me unwanted attention? What if they didn’t like what it looked like. What if they threw insults at me because I dared to do something that brought me to their notice?
I kept waffling, but really wanted to do it. The older I became, the more I wanted to do it. The more I got into size acceptance, ironically enough, the more I had the courage. As I started to accept myself more, I started to realize that it didn’t matter what anybody else thought about my hair color.
The tipping point came when a friend and I decided to do a dance. A local group, Finding Our Voices, holds an art exhibition every year during April, which is Sexual Abuset Awareness month in some areas. I’ve written about it previously. This year, I was invited back to read the essay I’d read 2 years ago, and decided to do a couple of other things as well.
One of the others was the dance. Let me preface this by saying, “I am not a dancer.” I was talking to my friend (who is a dancer) about this new (at that time) song Fuckin’ Perfect, by Pink. She encouraged me to dance with her for the exhibition. It took her a little bit of time (a few days, hey, she’s pretty persuasive when she wants to be), but I finally gave in.* The lyrics of the song include “I stopped looking for the critics, cuz they’re everywhere. They don’t like my jeans. They don’t get my hair!” I decided it was the perfect opportunity to dye my hair.
After all, if anybody said anything negative, I could just say I’d done it for the dance.
I loved the hair. Some people didn’t. After I’d had the purple in my hair for a few weeks, I decided I would keep the hair this color.
Recently, at work, I’ve been getting lots of notice about my hair. Now, I work at a craft store, so I am allowed to keep my hair this color, and not have to worry about having a “professional appearance” like some people do.
Even so. In the last week I’ve received at least 10 compliments on my hair. The comments usually start out with, “Is your hair … purple?” When I say it is, they say something to the order of, “That’s awesome!”
I know I am still taking a risk of people saying things negative to me. I take the risk of them telling me to stop being so “out there”, to stop living. To stay inside and hide and for gods sake, what is WRONG with that hair! But I’m finding that I no longer care. If other people don’t like my hair, my size, what I’m daring to eat when I’m not in my home, what I’m daring to do when I’m not in my home, well, as the saying goes, it sucks to be them.
I guess I owe some thanks to that surgeon who, so many years ago, was going to punish me for being fat by not doing what was necessary for my knee. He was the catalyst, after all, for me to find the fatosphere and start on the path to learn self-acceptance. Because really, isn’t that what this is all about?
*Even though I’ve done this one dance, I’m still not a dancer. Although, she is trying to get me to be more of a dancer than I was.
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