I was in my very early twenties when I discovered my first grey hair. I did what many other people have done I’m sure, and quickly plucked it out. As a few more came through they went the same way. A quick tug and it was as though they were never there.
In my mid-twenties, tasked with a very good job which came wrapped up in responsibility and a degree of stress, many more grey hairs appeared. They came through so quickly that tugging them out simply wasn’t an option. In came the hair dye. I hadn’t dyed my hair very much before. There was one occasion when I mistakenly picked up plum and dyed it purple. There was another when I was sure that Sun-In would look cool. It didn’t. It looked orange.
From my mid-twenties for just over ten years my hair remained under a coat of brown dye. I used different shades to mix it up a little and I always knew that one day I would let the grey grow through. I plucked an arbitrary age from the air and decided that my forties might be the time to hand my hair back to nature.
Last year, as some of you might recall, I donated 12 inches of my hair to The Little Princess Trust. At the time it was dyed which complied with their rules: dyed hair is fine; grey hair is not. As it started growing back from short to medium length, I noticed that the grey was a more prominent colour in my locks than I had realised. I passed my birthday pondering what to do. I hated my roots when they sprang through but I didn’t feel quite old enough to let my grey shine. Last autumn I made a decision. I might not be in my forties, but I would let my hair go back to its natural colour. With a little help from a hairdresser to blend some lighter colour in as the grey grows through it is on its way to being 100 per cent my colour again. I confess that as it is coming through I had forgotton what my natural brown looked like. It has been quite a surprise to remember that it is a darker and richer shade than the dye I was using. It has also been a surprise to find that the majority of my grey is actually now turning white.
So the reason that I’m sharing this with you? Next week is my birthday. I’m not looking forward to it. I’m not sure why but moving into a new decade sits better with me than getting towards the end of one. Next week I will be 37. I think back to when I was 27. I was getting married and looking forward to what that would bring. Three babies and one house move later I’m feeling pretty settled and wondering instead what will happen over the next decade. How my health will hold up. Whether we will travel more. How the boys will grow into their teenage years and young adulthood, and whether Chief will be eyeing up university life (I can’t quite imagine my boys being 17, 15 and 13!).
One thing is for sure though, I am focussed and determined to enjoy those years and grow grey with grace.
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