Sunday, March 24, 2013

Scintilla#13, Day 10

More choices for this day on The Scintilla Project. Check out other stories on the blogroll, and be sure to read Tony's selections on his blog, Cat-E-Whompus.

So which to choose?

1. Sometimes we wish we could hit the rewind button. Talk about an experience that you would do over if you could.

2. Write about spending time with a baby or child under the age of two. The challenge: if you're a parent, do not talk about your own child.

While various BIG decisions I've made instantly came to mind with this prompt and caused some intense discussion with my honey, I'm actually not sure that I would really do them over given the chance. Some of them have been painful and still have the power to cause me to cringe. But I also learned lessons that have been instrumental in getting me to where I am now -- a pretty good place, actually. So maybe not.

So let's talk about hair. Hair decisions can really seem like a big deal: to cut? Not to cut? To color? How much, what shade, how often?

With hair like mine -- stick straight without even a hint of curl, several awkwardly placed cowlicks, and super fine, which means it also has little body, falls at a hint of humidity, and will not hold even a hot roller curl for longer than it takes me to get to my destination -- my big decision has been:



I remember my mother giving me Tonette perms at about age four. Tonettes always included some paper dolls or other 'prize' inside the box since they were made specifically for children's hair.

 I sat in our kitchen swathed in old towels and listening to the radio or playing with the 'prize' inside the Tonette box while Mother patiently wound my long fine hair onto dozens of curling rods. Then came the application of the stinky permanent wave solution -- peeeeuwwww -- and then holding a towel tightly to my face while it processed, dripping everywhere. The last step was to rinse off the solution with curlers still tightly in place -- I remember laying on the kitchen counter with my head tipped back over the sink while Mother poured pitcher after pitcher of warm water over the curlers. And then, finally, she gently removed them and worked in one last rinse/setting solution, running her fingers through my now-curly hair -- it felt soooo good to get them out.

And then it was ready to be wound on those pink or brown soft plastic curlers -- not rollers --  and wait for it to dry, sitting in the sunshine or just by sleeping on them overnight. Hair dryers were not yet home appliances.

The result? Long banana curls with cute barrettes holding the hair back a little from my face. For a few months, anyway.

And probably a lot of broken-off hair.

I got perms -- home perms, beauty school perms, and later perms from salons -- through much of my life, stopping those only when we finally moved to Red Bluff and I decided to let all the coloring I'd had done on it for about a decade grow out and see what color my hair really was. That, and I hated feeling the spiky little broken-off hairs that always followed any kind of perm, even the ones where the stylists coated my hair beforehand and gave me super-gentle processing.

I told my daughters to remind me of how much I hated them if I ever uttered the word 'perm' again in connection with my hair.

So it's been a good 10 years now. I still have fine, stick-straight silky hair that has turned out to be a gorgeous shade of silver and white mixed with some of my own brown, and even my current stylist told me she'd have to refuse if I ever ask to have it colored! And once I lucked into stylists who know how to cut around my cowlicks and style my straight hair properly, it's never looked better.

Definitely a do-over if I could. And a vow of 'never again.'

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