Sunday, July 18, 2010


Sometimes hair defines a person, or so it seems. A week ago, I cut my hair for various reasons. About two years ago, I had gone natural (no more chemicals relaxer to straighten it) and had grown it to about 12 inches long (shoulder length and wore it in braids all the time), but in a matter of days, I decided to shave it all off.

I usually make drastic changes (colour/cut) to my hair whenever I have a new direction in life. It could be a new significant other, a new or better job, a life style change, or an evolved personality. In this case it was an evolved personality. I had gone through too many changes in the last couple years that I felt I was not really the same person I was even two years ago.

I had graduated my fashion designs course and had worked on a collection for a career launch. I was going to pack up and leave Italy and start the new direction in a different environment (I had never worked formally in the fashion industry before so it would have been my first). Then I got an offer that would mean putting on hold the fashion thing and moving to a different city but still in Italy. I didn’t even blink twice before accepting the position.

Now it’s not because it was a once in a life time opportunity. But at least it was getting me out of Rapallo and for now that was my biggest ambition to get out of there. Arriving my new station proved to be a lot different than I had expected, the bunch I would be working with were cordial and accepting, but I was still the new kid on the block and I was keenly aware of that. I tried to settle in but I felt like the sore thumb and I couldn’t figure out why.

Being in a new town and trying to register my kid and I as new residents proved to be quite a challenge. The citizens were great but the procedure was too daunting and I had very little time to run around, but eventually, I had it done. I thought that should give me the feeling of settling down and maybe take away a bit of that new-kid-on-the-block feeling. It didn’t. That was when it eventually dawned on my that I was digging deep inside trying to find the Naan that was two years ago because in a weird way, I thought she would fit better in this new role. The Naan that is today is one with a bolder personality, hard to intimidate and one with specific and clear directions for what she wants out of life and especially HOW to get it.

For the life of me though, I don’t know why I thought she shouldn’t be put into this new situation. I suppose a part of me wanted the meek submissive Naan that was to be here to make for easier integration. Eventually, it occurred to me, that unless I present the Naan that I want to represent from now on, I would have a problem later on, so I thought, what is the one thing I want to say about me and hope it will sink in to anyone that meets me?

I want to be thought as the brave unconventional woman that is not afraid of being and especially looking different because deep down I AM DIFFERENT.

So the one quick way I thought I could portray that was to shave the head. It takes a lot of courage to be a skin head, especially because society defines a woman’s sexyness and femininity by her hair length. The initial hair cut was a disaster, but a friend of mine levelled it off for me and now I am spotting an inch long mini ‘fro.

So I guess, unlike India Ari, I’ll say I am my hair….or at least for now.