Normal

Original Photo: Diane Alkier / Unsplash

I shaved my head.

Correction — I made my husband shave my head.

My hair has gone from shoulder length and permanently in a messy bun, to an undercut pixie thing ala Abby Wambach.

So we’re handling stay at home pretty well. Obviously…

I kid… not about my hair. That actually happened. But about it being some sign that we’ve officially “snapped” under quarantine.

This is not my first foray into super short hair. I first cut all my hair off in high school, wore it short all through college, and again a few years ago. According to a few pictures hanging in my office, I basically had this exact hair cut at least once before. (Weirdly I like this version better; my husband was fearless, whereas many stylists understandably are nervous to do a big cut like this.)

Anyway, I quickly realized that while the decision was spontaneous and immediate, a drastic hair cut with a beard trimmer and office scissors is, for me, way less impulsive than it sounds.

In a way, it is actually a return to myself.

Staying at home is really really hard. And I say that as someone who is intensely introverted and would only leave to go to the store once a week…or recently, to go to therapy to discuss, among other things, figuring out how to get out of the house more (heh, great timing!).

Yet, as hard as it is, in some small ways, I’ve found it also kind of freeing.

I used to declare before that I was “beholden to no one” in regards to my schedule. I had work and I had free time and I could mix and swap them as I pleased. Now though, I find myself “beholden to no one” in many other areas of my life. Social norms kind of go out the window when you officially stop being social.

Apparently, upon introspection, a lot of my “normal” was just a reflection of those social norms. My hair is just one example of “things that I delt with because I thought it was expected, but really doesn’t matter to me.”

I’ve decided to view this time of social distancing as an opportunity to figure out who I really am when no one is watching. My goal isn’t self-improvement, but more of a self-reflection. It’s not re-invention, but re-discovery.

It’s not about coming out of this better than I was before. Instead, my goal is to know myself better and to know exactly what I’m made of, while in the midst of all this.

For me, this is a silver lining to the clouds of anxiety. This small shift in mentality is making things feel just a little easier, a little more comfortable, rather than make a hard time even harder by feeling pressured to reach big goals and make big changes.

Again, “we can do hard things.”

Stay well.

2 thoughts on “Normal

  1. Good for you to be so bold!!! How liberating and fun! I don’t think I have the courage, especially since I don’t have the support from my husband. One of your best posts! I hope you love the person you see in the mirror today, but even more when this is all over.

    Liked by 1 person

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