Friday, June 13, 2008

Cut It Short

I finally had my hair cut short again yesterday, and it felt great.

I've always had short hair, worn a hundred different ways. Growing up, my mom used to cut my hair in the same chin-length china-doll bob. When she started sending me to Virgie's, Virgie cut my hair the same way, except for an occasional style twist like the shorter back/longer front bob, or the slightly fringed baby bangs. I consider the one time my hair was tightly permed to be a total lapse of judgement -- blame it on the Flores de Mayo festival in Sta. Rosa and Virgie's misguided attempt to make me look feminine enough for my frilly parade dress.

By high school, I had Demi Moore's siete-cut months before Ghost came out (I have dated Kodak prints to prove this) and this morphed into a classic one-length bob by senior year. I entered college with another one of my shorter boys cut, still managing to beat all the other girls with their long, perfumey unreal hair to the cutest boy in school. Ha!

When I started working, I stuck to short bobs. And this is where I took a break... When I got engaged, I automatically stopped cutting my hair. By the day of the wedding and for the first time in my life, my hair was past my shoulders. It was long enough to cover the fake hair piece ala pusod that Jing Monis attached to my nape to make me look older than my tender age of 22.

I was married with long hair, moved to the US with long hair, gave birth to my first son with long hair, and got pregnant again with long hair. Three years after the growing began (with tentative trims in between), I was over it. My husband and I returned home to the Philippines. I went back to Jing and, true to form, had my hair chopped off. At his salon Propaganda, I tried everything from 80's undercuts, to frosted tips, to assymetrical bobs. Later, with Jasmine at Hairworks, I experimented with the full bangs, and the modern china doll cut.

Then my husband got sick, and before I knew it my hair was growing out. When we started to spend months on end abroad for medical treatments, I was unwilling to pay $80 for a decent haircut. I let it grow. And grow it did all these months while I was taking care of my husband. When things started to get difficult, it began to feel like for every inch my hair was able to grow, it was bonus time realized. For the longer my hair was, the more it seemed like he was hanging on, staying with me.

The long ponytail I wore to his funeral was testament to the long fight he fought. Every day that I've tied up my hair since then was another day I remember waking up in the hospital and grabbing my ponytail holder and fixing my hair before the doctors made their early morning rounds. I remember pinning back my long bangs so I could prepare my husband's TPN without unconsciously brushing my hair back and contaminating my gloves. When we would stroll through the mall, I remember tucking all my hair under my wool cap so I also looked like my husband who had no hair.

But that was yesterday, and this is today. Today my hair is short again, and today I did not cry because I remembered. Today I smiled when I woke up and felt my short hair. Today I did not use a brush, hairspray or gel. I simply woke up and went on with my day, my hair so light on my shoulders. Thank you to Leo Pascual of Razzle Dazzle who listened to me when I said I didn't want crazy layers, but still snuck in an assymetrical length while my face was glued to the pages of this month's Vogue.

1 comment:

L said...

Hi Myra,

You always look good and well put together - with long hair, short hair, bangs, no bangs... When you last visited us in San Mateo, I had a sudden burst of energy to go shopping for shoes (remember how you indulged Catherine with an endless shoe fashion show?). I felt envious looking at your shoes in all heights, colors, and textures. My shoe shopping resulted in four pairs of patent high heels (ink blue, wine, chocolate brown, and green/copper).

For those of you lucky enough to spend some time with Myra, this is what she does to you: she infects you with her energy and creativity, and makes life so much more fun and interesting.

Myra, you are an amazing woman - an amazing merry window!