She called me a unicorn.
Years back, as my dark brown hair began showing glimmers of gray, the comment made me smile. I had never colored my hair. Never attempted highlights. I didn’t have any tattoos.
And I’ve never smoked pot either.
(This surprises no one.)
I liked the idea of being a unicorn. The idealist beauty of positivity and possibility wrapped in sparkles and rainbows. I mean, that’s my daily life, right? (Ha!)
But yesterday, got my hair colored. My hair is no longer wrassling with grays. I’d thought about coloring my hair for SO long; it felt like a massive change. I realize this is ridiculous, as most people play with hair color like nail polish or lipgloss shades. But it still made me nervous.
As I walked into the salon, my stylist with her cute pink rainbow shaded hair – maybe she is the unicorn – asked me what I wanted.
“Um, pretty much my same hair color, without the grays,” I said with an awkward giggle. “I like to think I’m adventurous, but I’m totally not.”
I trusted her, though, and she ushered me into the modern world. Some highlights. A little caramel. Done through a process that I can’t pronounce and which took forever. (Next time I’ll bring a book.)
The funny thing is, as I’d waited years to do this, the significance grew in my brain. It reminded me of skiing with our sons where the younger would not budge once we got off the chair lift. (He’d mastered the rope tow, but feared the bigger hills.) In my most encouraging voice, I told him the longer he waited, the bigger the fear gets. It’s true for us all.
The longer you wait, the bigger fear grows.
The first thing that struck me: This takes a long time! Think of all the stuff I could get done in this time. (And think of the time spent on beauty regimes throughout the ages!) Down time is healthy, of course, but I arrived unprepared for the time commitment. One can read only so many People magazines.
The second thing: We are not our hair. It’s an expression. Just like we are not our bodies or our eye color. We are on the inside. The outside is in our care for a short time. We don’t choose what we get, but how we care for ourselves reflects who we are. And it’s more fun to be playful.
The third, and most important: I thought about how quickly my thought about myself changed. My identity shifted ever so slightly. I hadn’t done something, then I did. Easy.
That’s all it took. An action. Showing up.
Is there something you’ve been overthinking?
Be playful and don’t take yourself so seriously.
Take action. Take a first step.
Any step that moves you closer to your goal.
Perhaps embracing self care? Beginning a yoga practice in baby steps? I’ve got you covered.
What if what you want isn’t as hard you think?
Change your story. Choose to be a unicorn.