I measured it with a child's straight ruler just to see how bad the situation was. I never meant to grow it this long. I never had the patience to even try. But the guy who’s been cutting my hair for almost 30 years suddenly couldn’t and I didn’t have a back up. So I did nothing, wishing for it to grow slower. Months later, here we are: my hair is 3 ½ inches long. I know, I know – such exaggeration. By any scale my hair still qualifies as short. Technically. But on me, this is long hair. Long enough to constantly hang in my face. Long enough to develop a tic that I hope is adorable but I suspect is just annoying of pushing the long hair out of my eyes. Long enough to wear a barrette but I won't because I look ridiculous in barrettes. Long enough to brush.
I haven’t used a brush in 20 years.
I am amazed at how many of my friends don’t wash their faces before they go to bed at night. I mean, I know your mother nagged you all of your life (just like I do) to wash your face before you go to bed and for good reason: the world pummels us every day with UV and pollution and grime on top of oily sweat. And some of us (you) sleep all night in that 21st century facial poultice. Do you wonder why your skin is rebelling on you, not looking as young/tight/glowy as it used to? Okay, I have to admit, you still look really great. But you won't forever, despite your excellent genes, because the world is a dirty place. No matter how much you drink at night (and remember I’ve had several of those cocktails with you), you must wash your face – and moisturize before you go to bed. It takes 3 minutes to wash the weight of the world off your face.
They all forgot my birthday. I mean, they didn’t totally forget, at least he remembered and reminded them to say "happy birthday" in the morning, but there were no cards, no presents, no cupcakes. If not for a couple of very good girlfriends (and Mama Facebook), it might have gone completely unnoticed by the world. I suppose 48 doesn’t really deserve a parade but I’m an Aries. Growing up I used to claim the entire month of March for my own birthday purposes – reluctantly sharing it with my dad whose birthday is 2 weeks before mine. But one might expect one’s family to at least go through the motions, even for boring 48. Not this year. The Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus will all remember and exact revenge (until we forget and forgive, of course -- in that order).
I bought my first piece of grown-up jewelry when I was 30. I had recently been promoted and was making some decent money. And while previously I'd felt comfortable spending money on shoes and clothing (you know, to maintain my work uniform), jewelry was something that came as gifts -- from a man. Don’t ask me where this 19th century-thinking came from. While I loved Jane Austin growing up (still today), part of the message for me from that period was how ridiculous it was for women to be so completely dependent on men. I grew up believing in more than just women’s rights. I believed anything other than absolute equality was ludicrous. And yet I didn’t ever buy jewelry for myself and I never poured my own wine. Go figure that.
Today I do both. And I bought my own birthday present.
I am stunned at how powerful a singer my girl is at age nine. And it’s more than just maternal pride, I’m more than a little jaded when it comes to talented children, even when they're mine. But people other than family members genuinely enjoy listening to her. Her little friends are jealous and want to sing like her.
She sings from her heart - from her soul. On key with good timing. That girl can sing. She has always been a force to be reckoned with. Now she’s a force with a voice.
My other girl is graduating from 8th grade in less than two months. She’s taller than my mother, not a great feat and yet it still feels significant. She's tall. She’s also beautiful and smart and witty and secretive and moody. And she has her first real boyfriend who lives 3 really big states away. She’s not ready to visit him, not that she’d be allowed to. And he can’t come here either. Texting is good. So is facetime.
One of these days I’ll go back to writing whole posts about a single subject. I’ll go back to 800+ words and you wishing I would be more concise.
But not today. Today you get fragments.