If you’ve ever heard of Shades of Gray, you can guess the title of this post is a play on words. But the question I’m asking myself lately is this:
Am I less then who I am if I go gray??
Here’s the back story: At the age of 47 I have been dying my hair for twenty plus years trying to cover up my gray. It could not be confused with sunny highlights, ever. No, this gray that sprouts from my roots starkly contrasts my natural dark brunette mane.
In my thirties, I felt I was too young to look old, so I dutifully colored my roots. Now getting my hair “done” every three weeks to cover up my glowing skunk strip (so lovingly named) is well, getting old.
Letting go of my dark hair has been one of profound personal struggle, just ask my hairdresser (thank heavens for her patience!) One appointment I’m done with the constant dying, the next I can’t go through with growing out my gray.
Recently I found myself pondering.
Who AM I if my hair is gray? Will men still find me attractive with gray hair or will I look too old? Am I less likable, pretty, educated, or less of a massage therapist? Will going gray change my core beliefs, values or friendliness? Is my self-worth wrapped up in my hair color? Of course not. But it sure feels like it sometimes. And why?? I don’t know the answer.
Just like I teach my clients, I must remember wellness isn’t just about healthy eating & exercise. It’s also about honoring our emotions, positive self-talk, setting healthy boundaries, and practicing self-acceptance.
Going from dark hair to gray is not going be an easy transition. Let’s be honest, when has change ever been easy?
What I DO know is I will be using all my self-management tools to get through it (if I can at all) and if not ….I will offer myself the same empathy and understanding I would to my clients, my friends….anyone else.
P.S. I share with you one of my favorite quotes:
“What you believe has more power than what you dream or wish or hope for. You become what you believe.”