Writing a bio of oneself is much MUCH harder than it seems. Really where does one start? At the beginning, middle, end? And what does one include? Can you really express, in a paragraph or two, the things that make you unique? I dare you to try. A while back I ran into this dillemma when I was asked to write a column about myself for the paper I work for. "Aaaaah, ok?" I thought to myself, doubting the fact that I'd actually be able to write more than one paragraph. I was given a slight advantage however, I'd get to write about what it has been like to be a red head. Now that's something I know about! So in honor of my attempts at writing a bio, I thought I'd share this small one time column on my experience as a red head, because after all, it is a big part of who I am. Enjoy!
Embracing my carrot top Off Deadline I think I can finally say with confidence that I am comfortable in my red hair. I would never change it for anything, but that hasn't always been the case. In my college days, I dyed my hair at home. It was supposed to be streaks of blond, but I ended up looking like Barbie's super pale, slightly less attractive cousin. My red hair was gone. For almost an entire year, I walked around with my fake hair color, ashamed of the fact that I tried to cover up who I really was. In that period, I discovered that I love the color of my hair. I love the fact that I am different from everybody else. It's part of my personality and who I am. Like a person with curly hair, which I also sport, you identify yourself with the characters of the hair. Like the color red suggests, I can be known to have a hot temper, to turn bright red when embarrassed or become the color of my hair when at the beach too long. Acceptance has not been an easy road. When I was little, I would walk around the Northshore Mall with my aunt. We wouldn't be able to go 10 feet without someone coming up to us to comment about my hair. Even at my young age, I would cringe and cower back. Why did people have to bother me? Why couldn't they leave me alone and let me be like everyone else! In middle school, when I would go to the hairdresser, the ladies getting their hair dyed would look at me and squeal, "Oh, doesn't she have the most lovely color?! I wish I could bottle that up." I just rolled my eyes and pretended not to notice. I mean I'd been dealing with this kind of attention my entire life. When would it end?! High school wasn't much better, but at least I had someone to identify with me. My best friend had red hair, too. From behind, people couldn't tell the difference between us. In fact, that is how we met. People thought I was her and that she was me. When I finally ran into her, I exclaimed, so you're the other redhead! It was during this time that I began to realize that maybe being a redhead wasn't so bad. I mean people still occasionally called me carrot top, but I could deal with that when my best friend had red hair, too. We could fight the redhead curse together. By the time college rolled around, I had mastered the, "Oh thank you, why yes I do love my hair, I know, it's a wonderful blessing." But I still wasn't sure if I meant what I said. After mistakenly dying my entire head blonde, I finally realized that being a redhead wasn't a curse. In fact, it was a blessing. Financially, I've saved money. I've NEVER had to go to the salon for professional coloring treatments and probably never will. Socially, people have an easy time remembering me, all they have to do is remember the hair. Being unique finally started paying off. But for me, my red hair is more than just a unique feature. It's a link to my history, to my family and what makes me who I am. My curly hair is a gift from my grandmother, my dad's mom, whom I idolized and loved. But my red hair is a gift from my grandfather, my mom's dad. While I never had the chance to meet him, like my grandmother, he'll always be a part of me, having left a part of himself in my genetic makeup. And that might be the best reason for me to love the color red.
And because a long, wordy post is always better with a photo, here is a picture of me on our last trip out to visit family in Chicago. In the words of my hubby, "The hair was angry that day."