I was not a great fan of my curly hair.
When I was about 6 or 7 years old I remember getting a new hairstyle which turned out to be too short for my liking. I felt that I looked like a boy and refused to step out of the house, but eventually I had no choice but to go out with my parents. My dad was waiting with his scooter just outside the gate. It was a fairly long way between my house and where my father was waiting. We had a huge garden to cross and I took refuge in it by ducking behind bush after bush till I reached my dad. Anyhow my covert operation didn’t work. My neighbours did catch me in my act and I was thoroughly embarrassed but my only way out was to pretend to be indifferent.
I had always been adventurous when it came to my hair, once I was the guinea pig for my cousin to try her hand at hair styling. I dyed my hair maroon once, and I have had all sorts of haircuts in my lifetime. A old friend of mine recently told me how I was modern enough when I was young to flaunt shorter hairstyles which was unthinkable to her then. I told her that it was not an act of fashion statement or modernism. My guess is that it was the one thing I could be adventurous with without getting into trouble in a very, very traditional and hierarchical society or perhaps it was simply that I didn’t care enough about my hair.
I lost so much of hair in my thirties that I was practically balding. It was then I woke up to the fact that if my hair weren’t curly and instead straight I would be sporting bald patches. Curliness seemed to give perceived volume to my scanty hair. I thanked my hair for the first time for what it was. I worried about my thinning hair, visited trichologist, tried out different oils and shampoos but nothing happened.
I reached a point when I finally gave up and slowly started to relax, even amuse myself now and then with the worst case scenario: if my hair got too thin and ugly I would shave it and wear a wig and perhaps flaunt different hairstyles.
But that didn’t happen. As I started loving my hair unconditionally somehow it decided to stay with me. My hair became little thicker and I am grateful and happy for it. I love it as it is now.
I started greying by 30s. My mom was at my back for quite some time asking me to dye my hair as she felt salt and pepper look doesn’t suit women. It’s never bothered me until now. I like my hair with all the grey in it. I feel like I have earned it.