Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Little white haired old lady

I may be imagining it, but I seem to have a lot more white hair than I did this time last year. I looked in the mirror yesterday and it seemed like they were just jumping out all over the place. I can't help but think that this is what IVF has done to me - aged me prematurely.


I mean, I saw my first white hair when I was 28, and for basically nine years of the last 10, nobody else has been able to spot them. I'd get maybe one or two more a year. And then this last year? They've been multiplying like rabbits. It's now obvious to everyone that I have plenty of the little buggers, especially around my hairline around my face. Just of course the spot you don't want them in - I wouldn't mind so much if they were all clustered on the nape of my neck, for example.

All right, OK, I am exaggerating a tad. Of course, it doesn't help that the bathroom at work is lit just so, with the light shining down on top of your head, so it picks them up better than any other bathroom I regularly stand in. Mostly my hair is still its natural color. It's probably only me for whom the white hairs shine out really brightly. Most people probably don't see every single white hair the way I do. They probably only notice a few strands, if I'm being really honest. But to me, I look in the mirror, and I look old.

I always thought I would go gray (well, white, I don't seem to have any gray ones) gracefully. That I wouldn't dye my hair. That I'd be one of those cool ladies with elegant white hair in my fifties. Not that anything else about me is elegant, but I have this vision of looking somewhat like Meryl Streep in that fabulous wig she wore for The Devil Wears Prada, so bear with me here. But now it's getting to the point where I really need to take a firm decision on this.

To dye or not to dye, that is the question?

If I actually manage to get pregnant, do I want to be the white-haired mom picking up my kids from elementary school? Well, presumably the salt-and-pepper haired mom, because I doubt it's all going to get to elegant white that quickly. But then, with the number of "advanced maternal age" moms who ARE successful these days, maybe I won't be so out of place. Do I want to totally embarrass my teenagers by being the fusty older mom? Assuming that is, that my visions of hip elegance don't come to pass, and I just end up fat and middle aged. I never wanted to be the fat middle aged white-haired mom.

If I actually want to meet a guy, do I want them to dismiss me instantly because I'm going white, or will I only attract men in their sixties who think I'm older than I am? I mean, I think men with gray hair can look very attractive, but there's that old sexism thing going on that women need to try to look younger. Especially in the silicone-enhanced fake-tanned blonde mecca of South Florida.

But then again, there's that old stubborn streak that thinks that after feminism I should be perfectly entitled to go white haired if I want to. That I should stand firm to my beliefs. That I should give full reign to my lazy side that just doesn't want to be bothered with dyeing my damn hair. That this is the way I am made, and if I'm supposed to be going white haired, so be it.

Knowing me, I'll probably put off making a decision for a while yet, and then I'll get to the point where everyone will know that I'm dyeing my hair to cover the white ones, rather than to just introduce a nice auburn highlight, and I'll feel all shameful about doing that so it'll never happen. But, hey, delaying has always worked for me in the past, so why change now?

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