8/24/2013

Confessions of a Middle-Aged Pink-Haired Broad with a Penchant for Quirkiness

This will sound silly given how long I've been doing this but there are times I wish I were less vibrant, less noticeable. See, I'm used to being pink haired and different, but I'm also used to being in an environment where those differences are generally celebrated.

Photo
(the girls and I exploring hats)

When I go shopping, I am fairly visible, and I get stares. I used to get stares because I am often accompanied by my three kids, and it was their differences, their autism, that garnered the looks and whispers. I can confidently say that those looks and whispers are now about me, not them.

And I'm conflicted. I do my hair different colors and spiky because it is just that: attention-getting. My kids had a hard time with change. There's nothing like changing hair styles and colors dramatically with dye and/or wigs to break them of that resistance to change.

My girls adore my hair. They love it pink and no other style but spiky will do for them (okay I may have to keep changing it if they are stuck on this one hair color and style). To them, I am spectacular and unique and there is something so incredible about that kind of unconditional love and support that makes my conflicted feelings feel wrong.

To be fair, I have never had a person come up to me and make fun of me. All I've ever received is compliments. But I've seen those looks, looks that a decade ago I would not have noticed, having trained myself to ignore strangers when Bobby and I were out and a meltdown happened. I learned not to notice, not to see, not to engage. But as a teacher who often sees her former and current students out and about, I've learned to look around again, and that means I sometimes run across those snickers by strangers...

It takes me a moment, but then I'll catch a glimpse of myself in a mirror in the store I'm in and even I take a second look. It always takes a moment. It's me. I'm always surprised by how neon my hair is. I have a strong hunch I really have no idea just how bright my plumage is. And, on balance, I think that's a good thing most of the time. After all, how many people get surprised by their reflections when they are out and about?

Making funny faces at the camera.
And I wonder why I get double-takes?
Embracing our silliness.

3 comments:

Joeymom said...

It is gorgeous. As you are.

maternalinstincts said...

I wish I had HALF the chutzpah you have, my dear. And, looking at the adoration in your husband's eyes? If you like it, the kids like it and he does, too? The rest of the world can go take a flying leap.

K Wombles said...

Thank you, both, for making me feel embraced and accepted. :) The best thing I've gotten out of blogging is a warm circle of friends.