Way back when, when gray hair was something my grandmother and my mother had (but covered up), I believed that I would go gray gracefully. No dyes, no highlights - whatever color my hair was was the color it would be. Talk about delusional.
Such promises are easy when youth seems endless and gray hair is decades away. But the aging process isn't merely one-dimensional. Not content to usurp only hair color, it etches its signature into the face, steals stamina from the body, nudges its aches and pains into the nooks and crannies of muscles and joints and ligaments.
With all that, it seems that gray hair would be the least of my worries. But, unlike the other markers of age, hair color is something that is easily controlled. Make an appointment. Park myself in a chair. Tolerate the aromas of the salon that promised beauty, even if it was only skin (or hair) deep.
For six weeks.
Then more like four.
Then, finally, a clump of gray around my right temple insisted on re-presenting itself just days after my dutiful sojourn to the salon. It was time to wave the gray -- er, white -- flag.
The fact that I arrived at this decision around the same time I retired is not coincidental. I figured if I'm old enough to retire (albeit early), I'm old enough to show the world my true hair color.
I have mixed feelings about this whole adventure, but at this point, I'm too far along to run back to start. The gray cat is out of the bag and halfway down the street.
Off on a new adventure. I'm sure of it. And less time at the salon gives me more time to enjoy it.