Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Tomorrow is my day off and I am getting a haircut. It has been 16 months since my last haircut, and this particular upcoming cut is fraught with a good dose of nostalgia.

Part of it is because of the history that lapsed between my last cut and now. I got the cut in July 2008 when I was living in New York for a summer internship. I impulsively stepped into a salon in Chinatown, randomly picked a cut, trusted a kind stylist and 9 inches were cut off the length. Though I ultimately ended up disfavoring the haircut (the blunt angles became too difficult for me to style everyday because I couldn't commit to the upkeep), losing so much weight felt so cathartic. My hair length in those 16 months eventually became a personal measuring stick: When I look back at the photos of me in the past year, I see my hair and how it fits into that particular timeline. September came along and my hair was one inch longer and I was engaged (and newly committed to regrowing my hair). Two inches saw a memorable trip to DC. Two and a half saw our engagement party. Four inches saw the stress of trying to graduate with two degrees, 50 hour work weeks, job searching and wedding planning. Five inches, graduation. Five and a half, a marriage. And so on.

Another part of my emotion over this particular haircut is that so much of my self-confidence is how I view myself, and I've always viewed myself with long brown hair. It was how I defined my self-image. When I originally got it cut that July, it was out of a frustration with how it looked and trying to find a desperate way to fix that. Watching it regrow made me see my ever-changing physical transformation and was like watching some facet of my personality come back.

I am excited. So, I've got my haircut picked out, and I don't think I will become brazen in the chair like last time and want a drastic change. But I think I will enjoy the release that comes in the process.

What about you? Do you have a physical feature that defines the way you view yourself? Have you ever done anything to transform it, or do you like it the way it is?

1 comment:

  1. My hair grows like a weed, so I enjoy letting it get long and then chopping it off. When I got hair cut a few weeks ago, I went to the lady who styled my hair for the wedding and told her that I didn't care what happened to it as long as I got rid of my bangs. Luckily, my hair turned out great! I love it!


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