It happened. The day that I thought wouldn't happen at least until my thirtieth birthday finally happened. It happened so quickly that I couldn't even prepare for it, much less stop it. To say it was a shock is an understatement.
I found my first gray hair.
Gasp, I know. I discovered the fate of my future earlier this month as I was getting ready for work. I'd been trying to style my hair despite not having a haircut in over four months and I saw this light strand poking out all funny as my Chi glided through the rest of my dark hair. I stopped, mid-straightening, with the steam poofing from the hot iron and thrust my scalp closer to the florescent light. At first, I thought my eyes had deceived me....it was just a strand of blonde peeking through my winter coif. But no, it wasn't blonde. It was gray, in all of its going-against-the-grain instead of blending in, your-getting-old glory. I must say, my heart had palpitations, but they certainly weren't out of love.
Can I just get a big ugghhhh? I mean, talk about ruining a girl's day! I didn't know what to do about my current predicament so I did what any sane person would do...I pulled it out and put it in the sink, allowing the water to whisk it down the drain where it most certainly belongs. I tried to just let it go but throughout the rest of the day I kept looking a little bit closer at my hair every time I saw a mirror. Call me vain, say that I'm in denial but whatever...it seriously took the pep out of my step.
Because once you find that first gray hair, all the questions that come with the gray hair starts to explode. Am I really old enough to have gray hair? Do I need highlights again? Are three gray hairs going to come back where I plucked the one gray hair?
Then, the never-ending monologue begins in my head about how to live healthier:
"Well, this just goes to show that you are not in college anymore, nor are you young enough to be wearing those dresses that look like shirts. You need to go to that kick-boxing class this afternoon instead of going home. Maybe this wouldn't have happened if you haven't been so stressed this year with the move, the new jobs, and starting over in Dothan. Or, maybe this would have happened even if you were in Montgomery. Remind myself to make a haircut appointment and go into great discussion about how to avoid more gray hair or at least start the conversation about if I need more highlights. Seriously, Christen, stop making such a big deal about this!"
I've tried not to make a big deal and just face the facts that this is something that happens to everyone, some people a lot earlier in life than their late twenties. But, finding this gray hair doesn't make me feel more mature or wise...it just makes me very aware that time is passing. Matters such as these make me wonder if I'm really way too self-absorbed or if I'm just a little sad that I can't get that time back. Do you ever feel that way too?
This week my girls are on Spring Break and we've officially eaten our way through half a dozen Krispy Kreme donuts and turned the toddler shoe aisle upside down at Target looking for a size eight in the purple shiny shoes. Maralee and Adeline have rescued baby Jaguar from the jungle (aka our driveway) and I've finally cleaned up after the tornado that swept through my closet early March. Life has been so frantic and rushed this month that this break, if only for a few days, has never come at a better time.
The past few days haven't had a schedule nor have they been wasted. We've just been hanging out and it has been so nice to forget about all the million reasons such as stress, age, health, and vanity for why I have gray hair. Being a mom is reason enough to discover gray hair so the fact that we can move past meltdowns over clothes and who-stole-whose-cracker and just be three girls that like to spend time with one another is truly a greater gift than anything mother nature brings.
Since the initial discovery, I've yet to find another silver stand. I don't say this boasting, I say it because I know that there are more out there but I'm choosing not to see them. Getting worked up over gray hair, getting older, and the stresses of life aren't nearly as much fun as eating a chocolate doughnut with my soon-to-be three year old girls with crazy morning hair. I'm choosing to enjoy today despite the fact that it is one day closer to getting older instead of younger. When I find another gray hair, it will be a reminder for me to slow down, cook instead of eating out, play in the afternoon sun instead of stare at a computer screen.
Just as Dawn from My Home Sweet Home says, God looks at our insides, not our wrinkles, waistline, or in my case, a-hem, gray hair.
Till next time, let your light shine!