I’m wrestling with a decision. A ridiculous decision. A decision that most people could and would make over a cup of coffee. It is something to which I am giving entirely too much weight and consideration.
Vanity. This is unfamiliar territory for me. I’m not being superior or holier-than-thou. I’ve never had much reason to be vain. I wasn’t a cute kid–no outstanding physical attributes. In my family, that role was filled by my brother; golden curls, olive skin and big puppy dog eyes framed by long, long lashes. He was adorable. I, on the other hand, have pale skin and freckles, did the braces and glasses thing in my preteen years, and have a decidedly asymmetric face, complete with bizarro nose. Let’s just say I never put much stock in my looks. (However, I was cute for about 10 minutes in the Fall of 1996.)
Nor did I possess a grand intellect. That position is ably held by my sister–damn, she’s a smart cookie (and she was super cute–still is). Don’t get me wrong–I don’t think I’m stupid or anything, but whatever brains I’ve got have never elevated me to the level of “standout.” Looking back, it appears that my role in the family was that of the cautious, responsible one (mostly). I was a standout at being steady (outwardly, anyway.)
So, vain? No. Insecure? For many years, yes. Admittedly, I didn’t always deal with my insecurities in the healthiest of ways. I had mostly evolved past that by my mid-twenties. It wasn’t difficult–I just stopped looking.
Age has also never been something that I have never been terribly concerned with. I am one of those people who often can’t remember their age–I have been outspokenly WRONG about my age. My mother used to tell me that I was 40 when I was born. I likely will have to consult my sister with regard to my next age change. Yet, I am starting to see evidence that age isn’t just a number…age is what happens to your face when you are not looking.
In addition to my laundry list of physical flaws (perceived or otherwise), I have a mop of gray hair. I found my first grays at around age 14. It’s totally hereditary, and I have the family photos to back that up. Many of the women in my family have fought the good fight against their grays, only to embrace it later in life (typically by their early 40′s.)
I sort of halfway fought the fight, starting in my teens. I say “halfway” because I would never choose a hair color that was my own. Sometimes I would get close to the dark brown that Mother Nature gave me, but mostly I chose outlandish platinum blondes or brassy reds. In retrospect, I don’t think I was really trying to hide my grays. I think I was just using them as an excuse to be experimental (and goofy looking.)
Regardless, I (mostly) have embraced my grayness (because I just don’t care that much.) Until recently, that is.
A dye-job. That’s my big crisis. Whattodo, whattodo. If I give in to my little aging demons, I’m not getting a do-it-yourself kit, like I used to do–because I actually want it to look good. That’s what’s eating at me–my motives have changed. I actually GIVE a shit what I look like. Sort of.
What’s bothering me (I think) is that I look older than I really am (I think I am 35–can someone fact-check that for me?) I have friggin’ AGE SPOTS on my cheeks (no doubt it’s sun damage, even though I live my life mostly as a shut-in), wrinkles around my eyes that don’t go away when I stop smiling, and perma-creases in my forehead.
Why do I suddenly care about this stupid crap? And can someone please recommend a good colorist?