I like to express myself through my appearance. We all do. I fly my flag high. I am a bit of a hippy. I like alternative culture. I like bright hair and crazy clothes.
Last year, after spending a year putting fake dreadlocks in and out of my hair I decided to get them for real. My wonderful friend Charlie took days out of her life and transformed my hair into a dready wonderland. I had princess hair and I loved it.
I sashayed around my living room (well as much as you can sashay when you are eight months pregnant) feeling GLORIOUS.
I have had to defend my hair choice from people who have said that I am helping cultural appropriation https://aimeesbrainspace.wordpress.com/2015/02/19/w-a-n-g/. When my son was born and was a calm baby instead of a red ball of screaming fury, I was accused of being a drug addict through my pregnancy by a snobby midwife.
I LOVE dreadlocks. I always have. I think they are beautiful. I think I look more attractive with them than I did before I had them. I feel more confident with them on my head.
I am having a slight hiccup at the moment though.
My issues are as follows.
I don’t feel like my hair is clean. I wash my hair twice a week. After three days of pulling pints in a pub that gets so hot and sweaty that it drips off the ceiling onto you, I give them a full scrub. And then again midweek. This morning I woke up to find that the biggest member of my fluffy family was lying on my hair. He was licking his penis and my hair at the same time. On my other side, was the baby, dipping my hair in and out of his spitty mouth cave.
Even though i scrub at my hair with a shampoo bar from Lush, I don’t feel like I am getting all of the stranger sweat, beer, sawdust, baby dribble, porridge, blueberries and dog willy out.
Head lice. I am very scared of having them. I have a child. As we all know, children are carriers of disgusting infections and creatures. It will not be long before I have to let my precious offspring out into the world to mix with other children, who will teach him all of the things that I have been trying to shield him from and cover him in a thick layer of germs.
When I was at school they would send a letter home if someone in your class had the horrible head beasties. My mum would treat us all (before even looking to see if they were there) she once put the horrible smelling poison in my eye, it was the most painful thing that had happened to me at the time. I had a pink eye for three days. (even typing this I am itching my head)
So I am thinking very seriously about having dread free hair. I can wash it to my hearts content and it is less likely to end up in my dogs mouth at the same time as his winkle.
Why is this such a big decision to me? Why is my hair so important? I know people who have merrily shaved their heads for charity or to be in solidarity with a loved one who has lost theirs for medical reasons. It is just hair. Hair grows.
I heard someone talking about a person that they knew recently. She had gotten into a new romantic relationship. She left her house to spend all of her time at his house. After a few months her slightly disgruntled housemates enquired after rent money and what she was going to do with her belongings. She told them to just give all of her things away to a charity shop because she had a new life and didn’t want her things anymore.
She had changed her clothes, music, hair, hobbies and anything else that she had spent the last thirty years collecting.
I am not like that. I worry about a house fire snatching all of my treasure away from me. All of the pictures, gig tickets, clothes, albums and other bits that I have been given over the years.
But should I care so much about them? Does it matter that if when you first catch a glimpse of me walking down the street that you can’t guess what sort of person I am?
I had lunch with a friend this week who commented on how my mini man was always so well coordinated and looked smart. It is because I see people look at me, and then look into my pram looking for my obvious failings as a parent due to my unusual appearance. I don’t want people to unfairly judge my perfect tiny person because I am not following the fashion trend of the moment.
And I do solicit a lot more negative attention with dreadlocks in my hair than I did when I had loose hair. Even if it was magenta. I gave up looking at people in the street years ago as I don’t really care what people think. My friends notice and point out the staring judgmental people though, so I know that they are there.
I am worried that I won’t feel as attractive, like Samson losing his strength with his hair, I might lose the last little bit of attractiveness about me and fully descend into the pit of mummy hood, never to feel sexy ever again.
Oh but the dog penis.
I think they have to go.