I dye my hair. I dye my hair because I feel more like me when the top of my head is a shock of red. And every time, without fail, as hot pink puddles around my feet in the shower, I wonder, have I gone too far? The shower looks like I’ve killed someone in it – pink and red spotting the walls and the floor, and I question, do I really think the red looks good, or is it an attention-seeking behaviour?
When the water runs nearly clear and I step out into the chill of the bathroom air, I wrap my hair into a towel that has almost become more covered in pink than its original blue, and my wondering continues. Will I be happy with the colour, or will the shade I chose this time be too much for me? But then, instead of looking at the pile of wet hair on top of my head, I avoid the mirror, quickly combing through the strands, and begin to blow-dry it. You see, I know from experience that the colour you see in the shower water and the colour you see in the freshly dyed wet hair is not the colour that appears when the hair is dry. And the anticipation builds.
Now. Now is the time to see the results of the pink-stained fingers and fume-driven coughing fits, and decide. I look in the mirror, and a smile spreads across my face as I recognize myself – too many of my favourite memories are tied to my red hair and without it, I feel as though a part of me is missing. And as I continue to defiantly wear red and other ‘clashing’ colours with my red hair, regardless of the people who think that it shouldn’t be done, I ponder. This change that I bring about myself is still a guessing game and potential failure every time I do it, and yet, I continue to find the bravery to begin the process.
I am learning to like the expectant excitement of entering into the unknown. By no means am I comfortable with it, nearly jumping out of my skin every time a rainstorm hovers over Lilongwe, sending loud cracks of thunder rattling through my bones. However, God is growing in me an ability to delight in the promise of things to come – even when I do not know what they may be. The parallels that I see in the stages of dying my hair and the way that God's plans are slowly revealed to me are catching my thoughts today. I worry, fuss, and over-think, and then decide to make the jump into the abyss of the undefined yet to come. And I have yet to be disappointed when I do. So in this Advent season, a time expecting the arrival of the Messiah, I choose joy in the waiting for the arrival of the next chapter of my story.
As my head sinks into the pillow at the end of another long day, I catch a glimpse of the red, and grin, remembering the promise breathed into life by the rainbow that stretches across the sky following a storm.
Genesis 9:16 ESV
Photo credit for this post goes to Gino Moura, whose talented photography skills captured some awesome moments while at Kande Beach a few weeks ago. Thanks for allowing me the use of these, friend!
15/12/2013 04:03:15 am
Well, Red, it suits you! What an eloquent post with a surprising metaphor at the end. Love it! Your gift of writing is unfolding. Maybe like the process of drying your beautiful hair after a colour change. Thank you for capturing my imagination in a very fresh way for Advent and Jesus' advent-ageous appearing in my life.
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Welcome! My name is Katiana and I am a development professional pursuing my dream to live out Isaiah 1:17 to the best of my abilities. I am passionate about teaching and working with vulnerable families and children to improve their lives sustainably.
This blog is composed of my personal opinions, which do not necessarily reflect the opinion or views of institutions or organizations that I may be or have been affiliated with.