broadsideblog

Posts Tagged ‘making a change’

It’s my body and I’ll change it any way I like

In aging, beauty, behavior, Fashion, life, Style, women on March 21, 2012 at 2:14 am
English: An ethnic Adivasi woman from the Kuti...

Image via Wikipedia

Loved this piece in The New York Times about women going seriously blond after chemotherapy:

A decade ago, the women who came to see Ms. Dorram, then at John Frieda, after chemo or radiation therapy did so furtively. They removed their wigs in the bathroom or booked early morning appointments so they didn’t have to be in a room with healthy clients.

“You feel vulnerable,” said Ms. Kreek, who met Ms. Dorram at John Frieda, when she returned to blond after her first round of chemotherapy in 2003. “You don’t want to come into a room with ladies with tons of hair, going, ‘I liked it when you did that last time.’ It’s like, ‘Shut up.’ ”

Now, for many women who have lost hair during cancer treatments, dyeing is empowering — and doing it in an open, chatty session makes it all the better. “They’re feeling good again,” said Alexis Antonellis, a colorist at Oscar Blandi who often sees clients who want hair colored after chemotherapy. “They want to go back to who they were. They’re so excited to sit back in the chair and get their life back. It’s really nice. You’ve got to see the smiles.”

I decided in December 2011 it was time to finally replace my arthritic left hip. I was, frankly, terrified of the whole thing. Four kinds of anesthetic? Three days in the hospital? A six-inch scar? Shriek.

A whole parade of strangers would soon be all over, and inside, my body. For a control freak like me, this was a little much.

So, after 20+ years as a (highlighted) blond, I went back to being a redhead — again. The last time I’d been red was in the 1980s, at the end of my crazy, fun-filled 20s.

Going decisively and suddenly red was also empowering.

I needed the surgery but I wanted a new look. When you’re about to face, or have just faced, a whole pile of medical intervention you really crave  doing something to your own body that’s fun and painless – and totally of your choosing.

(I’m not one for tattoos or piercings, so what else was left?)

I’m loving the new color, and have had nothing but compliments on it; a photo of me/it is on the “welcome” and “about” pages here.

Have you ever made a radical change to your appearance as a way to take charge — maybe at a shaky time in your life?

Did it help?

Seeing With Fresh Eyes

In behavior, design, domestic life, family, Health, life, love, Money, women on March 28, 2011 at 11:54 am
The 'Glasses Apostle' in the altarpiece of the...

Time for a new vision? Definitely! Image via Wikipedia

I returned home a few weeks ago after a three-week absence, the longest I had been away for a few years in one stretch.

I suddenly saw the bedroom, robin’s egg blue, with fresh eyes, and I wanted a change, a big one.

Now it’s soft, warm gray — the same color we’ve had in our small dining room for a few years. It’s the exact shade of cigarette ash, soothing yet clean and crisp without being cold. (It’s called Modern Gray from Sherwin-Williams and the owners of Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie [one of my favorite stores] have the exact same color in their country home.)

One of the great challenges of everyday life is being able to see things with fresh eyes. It all starts to blur after a while into a haze of comforting, familiar, routine sameness.

Putting my mother into a nursing home jolted me — hard — out of this stupor.

I sat with her at dinner, a silent room filled with nodding gray heads, and came home desperately grateful for my sweetie’s laughter and loud music and even the noisy small baby downstairs.

We sorted through boxes of her belongings, lovely things she had acquired from all over the world, from hand-embroidered dresses from India to a folk art wooden animal she bought in London. I came home determined to toss everything without meaning or serious value to me, from my old wedding ring to the armoire that’s been in the garage for three years.

The cost of her care every month is as much as we, combined, earn. Now we’re looking into long-term care insurance.

What has sharpened your vision lately?

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 12,211 other followers