At this moment

There is a girl in my library. She is maybe 19 years old. She’s tiny and cute and doesn’t at all look like she should be sporting a giant head of dreadlocks. But she is.

She caught my eye and as I watch her, she tips her head down to read her textbook. As she does so, her dreads fall forward and flop into her face. Impatiently, she scoops them up in one hand and flips them back over her shoulder. I watch as she shifts position to hold them in place.

A few seconds pass. Inevitably, the dreads creep forward and tip the scales, falling into her face once again. I can almost feel her frustration as she gathers them up and sends them sailing back over her shoulder. I’ve been staring at her for several minutes now and it’s become like a ritual. Shift, slip, flop, frustration, grab, flip, shift. Repeat.

I’m fascinated by the process. I’ve had long hair my whole life and one of the first lessons you learn is not to let it bother you. My hair falls in my face. It hangs where I don’t want it. Sometimes, it is just in the way. You ponytail. Long hair, you always have a binder of some sort, or you learn to use a pen. You ignore. You adjust. You refuse to let it be a bother. Or else, you become the girl in the library who is silently fighting a war with her own hair. A war she cannot win.

And strangers write blogs about you.

Part of me wants to ask her if they’re new. They must be. She doesn’t wear them comfortably. Then I want to know why. What made her make this statement? Is it an act of rebellion? Is she trying to prove something? Does she think she looks cute?

At this moment, I’m simply curious.

The Danger of Brushing Your Hair

I’ve got a lot of hair, this surprises no one. It’s long and it’s curly, which usually means an intense amount of tangles. I have it down to a science on how to care for this unruly mop.

Most specifically, I brush it out, thoroughly, morning and night.

Think of how many times I’ve actually done this; brushed my hair. 365 days a year, twice each day. Let’s say I was 10 when my mother stopped telling me to brush my hair (I have no idea, I’m just throwing that out there) which makes 22 years+.

22years * 365 days = 8,030 days *2 times a day = 16,060 times I’ve brushed my hair, at a minimum.

That is an awful lot of hair brushing, we can all agree, right? One would also have to assume that brushing that much would also mean that I am pretty good at it, right? Of course.

So, what’s the problem?

The problem is that after 16,000 times brushing my hair, last night, while doing the thing I’ve done more than sixteen thousand times before (why does it seem like so much more when you spell it out?) I somehow managed to pull a muscle in my back. WHILE BRUSHING MY HAIR.

How embarrassing! The muscle is between my shoulder blades and the pain radiates upward into my neck. Which, naturally, makes me move like a robotic zombie today. I’m extremely uncomfortable and very stiff. People keep asking me, “what happened?” and I politely respond, “I pulled a muscle”. Some kinder folks are letting it go at that, but most people will then ask, “how?”

“Um, brushing my hair.”

I sound like an idiot. I clearly need to make up a better story for this. But, really, how on earth does that happen? Who pulls a muscle while brushing their HAIR?!?!?

I need a keeper.