Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Growing Older

Today during school I was talking with the girls and one of them asked, "Mom, are you going to get your hair colored soon?" They were each staring at my temples and the white hair shining through. Elizabeth (7) started to get teary. "Mom, I didn't know you had white hair. I don't want you to be old." The older girls comforted her with the fact that I was going to get my hair "painted" again soon and look just like myself.

In my mind I am about 23. Sean is 23. When I watch basketball, those players and myself are the same age. Really, we are. But the calendar and the pictures and the aching back are telling me a different story.

I have been blessed in my life to know many Godly, beautiful white haired ladies. Truly they are living life to the fullest and are vibrant. They are wise and generous. But, I know at one point they were middle aged mid 30's, house full of kids, never caught up women like myself.

It's more evident to me each day that we live in a youth culture. And just as much as that youth culture trickles down to the younger ages, it trickles up as well to us 30ish women who are moving into a new phase of life. The world tries to make it about appearances, hair, clothes, figure- the things we can "control". But the Lord is calling us to a different set of standards. I'm just wrestling with what that fleshes out to be in the everyday.

Whatever your phase of life I'd love to hear your thoughts on the matter.


Cindy-Still His Girl said...

I remember firmly stating I would NEVER color my hair. I would embrace my age and the hair God has given me. I would rejoice that He'd given me life long enough to have grays! I love gray hair on other people, so I would love it on me and NEVER color it.

Then I got gray hair.

I'm going to buy some color this week.

Tara said...

I'm with Cindy. I have a couple grays that pop through every now and then, but since I have longer hair I'm thinking I can go a while before I have anything done.

Also, I'm planning on letting it grow out this winter and getting a really sassy new do in the spring. Then I'll donate the hair to locks of love (and treat myself to a GOOD haircut, not a $10 drive through jobber!)

Catherine said...

I'm with the other commenters - it's a totally different ballgame when you ACTUALLY start seeing gray hair!

Last year I read "Going Gray" and was totally all about letting my hair be its natural color. Now I have several gray hairs that are very visible and I'm struggling with this issue.

Two things holding me back are the fact that I really love my natural hair color, and I feel like coloring it will cover up the good as well as the gray, plus the fact that I can't afford to get it colored in a salon and I have had BAD experiences with boxed dye. Let's just say you only have to turn your hair green ONCE to get skittish!

A few weeks ago my mother in law saw some of my gray hairs and made a comment about how I must just be too overwhelmed with the children because I was getting gray hair. I felt like she was insinuating that I was letting myself go, which she almost certainly was not (she's a very sweet lady and would probably be horrified if she knew how upset I got!), but I think it's a symptom of the fact that I think everyone else thinks I'm letting myself go.

Anyway, as you can see by this long comment, this is an issue for me right now! If you come up with any answers, please share!

Michelle said...

You can turn curly white and I'll turn curly grey, and we can still keep believing we're 23!!! It'll be fun!! We'll just have ignore all the stares and convince our children that we'll never be too old to laugh and play with them.....

mom24 said...

I alway said that my hair is the one thing I would spend money on as I aged (I grew up blonde and it darkened in college)- no nails, no fancy makeovers, and definitely no surgery (my mom had a facelift when she was 45 - it troubled me as well as not really making much difference).
I've also found that I feel about 5 years younger than I am - but my body is starting to remind me these days. I can understand your dd's comment - it's hard for a child to realize that as they grow 'up' their parents are growing 'old'! But even with a little hair color we can grow old gracefully, huh?

Saralyn said...

Okay, maybe I'm alone here, but I love my gray. I have a wonderful act to follow, though. My mother's hair was gray before I met her--she was graying when she married in her 20s--and I think she's grown more beautiful with the years.

Mary@notbefore7 said...

Monica, Without a doubt I struggle with this. I told my hubby I would NOT grow old gracefully and it would cost him. we laughed back then, seeing as I was 22 when we got married.

The first gray appeared when I brought baby 1 home (at age 25), then I got the next with baby 2. Since then, they keep coming.

I did use box dye (and have on and off since high school) HATE what permanant does to my hair. BUT love the temporary (4-6 week) dyes! I willk probably play around with seeing how they cover up the day.

I have had it down 2 times professionally and LOVED it! A local salon gets interns to train and they are 75% off when they start...NICE :) Cut and color for $21 :)

But now she is 50% off...ugh.

Right now, I am embracing the gray, yes, even at 31...because there isn't too too much...yet!

shay said...

I always knew I'd color my hair because my mom didn't and although it didn't bother her, for some reason it bothered me as a child.
I'm finding myself shocked by the age I'm showing in photos I see of myself, I'm not sure at all how to get away from how I feel about it.
This is definitely something I struggle with and I don't want to send the wrong message to my young daughters about aging.
Our culture is pervasive is it not?!

Pearmama said...

I am going to turn 37 in a couple of months, and I have a couple of grays that pop up on my right temple and this stubborn white eyebrow hair that I continually pluck out. When I see the grays at my temple, I pluck those out too. Dude, I am waaaaay too young for full head of grays. I'm thinking, I won't allow myself to be full gray until I am in my 50's.

But what I want to know is, how come men look so darn handsome with white wings? My husband is younger than me and has lots of gray hair...and he's never looked better! LOL