Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Long As I Can Grow It, My Hair

Our hair is something we all think about. We wash it, comb it, style it, color it, or wish we still had it.

Genetics plays a big part in our hair. In my own case many of the men from my mother's side are bald like my great-grandfather. All of the women have lots and lots of hair.

Two of my brothers are bald. One has been since high school.

My youngest brother is only five years older than my oldest son so they have always been quite close. My son has more hair than two people should have. He realized suddenly one day how bad my brother felt about being bald and stopped teasing him about it.

The other brother makes the jokes before anyone else can. He is fond of saying things like, "God made a few perfect heads… on the others he put hair!" or "This is not a bald spot….it’s a solar panel for my brain."

My oldest brother had hair like my son. As he got older his turned the prettiest white.

My mother's mother had the most beautiful black hair. She wore it long but kept it pinned up to keep it out of her way. As a farmer's wife she was busy all day. She cooked all meals on a wood stove so that alone was a problem if hair was hanging loose.

After she suffered a series of strokes in her 60's she gained a few, very few, strands of gray in her hair. She also began wearing it short because she was no longer able to care for it otherwise.

My father's mother had the most beautiful silver hair. Many women go to the hairdresser to try to have their hair colored to look that way. They inevitably end up with blue hair.

Mom's hair was dark but began to gray as she aged. She colored it to a lighter color than her natural dark hair. Eventually she let it grow out natural because it began to turn more white than dull gray.

My mother had a mole on one side of her head. The hair that grew from that mole was very white. It gave her a pretty stylish white streak in her dark hair. When her hair became white that streak was dark brown. Imagine that.

Daddy had dark hair when I was very young. In his late twenties his hair had become that salt and pepper color. He always wore it short. Somehow that seemed to hide a lot of the gray so that he still had what looked to be brown hair when he died.

Both of my sisters have naturally curly hair. One has almost kinky curls. She straightens it to make it manageable. The other has hair that falls into waves. All she has to do is wash it and brush it. She looks like she spent hours at the beauty shop.

My hair on the other hand is straight as a string with absolutely no body at all. The saving grace is that there is a lot of it. That can also be a curse but I will accept it because it does give a small amount of volume.

I wore my hair long as a child and young woman. The straightness came in handy for that. I was often referred to as "Morticia" as in Morticia Addams from the Addams Family.

You will often see people with long hair tuck it behind their ears to keep it our of their faces. My mother hated that . She was constantly telling me that my ears were not handles.

My hair was a sable brown color and I am vain enough that I loved that color. Of course with age the color fades. And a little bit of gray seeps in. I inherited my maternal grandmother's genes for hair color. I am almost 69 years old and my hair is still mostly brown.

When we were having pictures taken for the yearbook my senior year of high school. My mother insisted that I wear my hair up for some reason. As you can see from my picture at the side here she got her way. I suppose she did not want to chance me tucking it behind my "handles".

Now that I am older I wear my hair shorter for reasons of vanity. Long hair tends to pull the focus of eyes down which makes a person look older. I know I am not young any more but I was blessed with youthful genes. My coloring is good and I have few wrinkles for a person of my age. I do not need help to look older.

My husband had hair the color of fresh straw. It was so pretty. When he was so sick before he died his hair turned gray. Beause of the chemo he lost a lot of it too.

I have four children. My oldest son had very dark hair. My second son and my daughter are blonde like their father. My third son has brown hair.

Whenever a new baby was born in the family my mother-in-law would ask what color the hair was.before she asked about anything else. She especially wanted a granddaughter with that carrot-y red color. She had two sons with that color but no daughters. She kept hoping but it never happened.

My oldest son is very gray now. He has been turning gray since he was quite young. My second son was always so blonde that it is hard to tell just how gray he is. He also wears his hair short but I think I see the tiniest bald spot right at the crown of his head. My third son seems to be keeping his color for now even though he is a grandfather. My daughter still has that pretty color she got from her father.

As for my grandchildren the boys keep their hair well-trimmed as is the style today. Brown and blonde are the colors. The girls have all had long hair. When my oldest granddaughter graduated from college she cut hers off. Her father was heartbroken.

My great-granddaughters are still just beginning to grow hair. It will be interesting to see if their parents keep their hair long.


  1. I read that red hair will probably disappear as a trait. Your MIL was right to want it passed on I guess.

    My mother had few gray hairs when she died at 81. I am not so lucky!

    1. As I said it is all genetics. Your hair genes came from another direction.

  2. Mine has kept fairly good color, but as age proceeds, so does the thinning and a bit of grey.

    1. I have been lucky with my genetics. At the same time age has not snuck up on me. It rushed up and tackled me!

  3. I had thick hair but it went south in my late 30s. I don't think about it much anymore.

    1. My brothers were a little touchy about hair loss when they were younger. Now that they have a bit of age on them they have accepted their baldness.

  4. I have very thick dark hair that is starting to show some gray roots. I keep those colored. My hairdressers swears my hair grows while shes cutting it. The women in my family have lots of hair but the men are balding.

    1. My family is the same way. I wonder if there are families where the men have lots of hair and the women are losing theirs.

  5. I am not going bald I am just getting too tall for my hair. :)