51 Shades of Grey

August 19, 2014
Now that I have your attention….


Okay, so there’s no soft porn here, sorry. It’s just me, dealing with the awkward transition of letting myself “go grey” at 51.

I’ve been thinking about it for a while now, and I’m fortunate enough to have a partner who is cheering me on in this little journey. He is genuine in this  (although I’m sure the added benefit of looking even younger standing next to me doesn’t hurt).

Now, I’m not so self absorbed that I think anyone really cares about this, but there is a weird psychology about it all the same. Seriously – when the subject comes up, the responses are heavily weighted towards some version of  “No! You will look so much older!”. This has the effect on someone with my personality of me digging my heels in harder. Why does the goal (especially for women) have to always be to look younger? This plays out even in the business world, where studies consistently show that women with grey hair (even if their qualifications and experience are greater) lose the job to someone with a younger “look”. I’ll spare you me clambering up onto my soapbox on this…anyone who knows me can fill in the blank of what I think about that.

On a more practical note, I started going grey in my 20’s, and have been creatively trying to cover it up since then. Now it’s just a constant expense and hassle, not to mention I don’t like the frequency of chemical exposure I am getting at this point. I love what my amazing hairstylist has provided me all this time – she rocks, and I have loved the look, but I’m just over it now. Grey wins.

The decision is the easy part. It’s the subsequent follow-through on the incredibly awkward looking transition while it fully grows in that’s the hard part. I somehow feel like it requires an explanation everywhere I go lest people think I don’t notice it – that I’m just lazy in my appearance or something. No, I’m actually doing this on purpose. It’s a little like when your kid gets a black eye, and for the next week you feel you have to explain it so no one will think you beat your child.

Anyway. That’s it. Just wanted to share…in case anyone else is debating the same decision, and struggling with the hard part of getting there. Although right now all I can think of is my mother’s voice saying “People aren’t paying near as much attention to you as you think they are”. What a relief.