Wednesday, October 28, 2015

marian hair care

Forgiveness works hand-in-hand with justice.
I can be hurt by you and decide that I don't want to be hurt by you again. I can do that with hatred in my heart, or I can do that with forgiveness.
--Fred Luskin

I watch the little flakes of dandruff float onto the dark wood of the desk.
Skin is so bizarre once it is attached from the body. It is all dry and flaky and inconvenient.
I spent the entire summer washing my hair with vinegar, and scrubbing dandruff out of my hair by hand.
It was an interesting summer, because my hair never felt quite like mine. I missed being able to
run my fingers through my hair; I missed the cloud of brown waves that would float over my shoulders as I sped-walked down the sidewalk. I missed a lot of my physical appearance, and my vanity suffered. But I forged ahead, in the name of sulfate-free shampoo and twenty-something foolhardiness.

I became more attentive. I noticed how sweat from a morning run effected my hair. I noticed how the water in Minnesota treated my hair better than the water in New York. I noticed that the water in South Bend, Indiana nearly destroyed my hair. I noticed the way rain made it sticky and heat made it lighter.

I also spent the summer trying to build a relationship with Mary. (Mother of God Mary, not the other Mary's in my life with whom I am blessed with relationships.) And I often wondered how Mary did her hair. And I wondered if it was heavy or stringy or smelly. It seems like a very silly, inconsequential aspect of my life, my hair. And an unlikely candidate for finding a a new facet of friendship with Mary. But, oddly enough, I felt connected to Mary through my stringy, sometimes-greasy "au naturale" hair.

It is the particularities of life that bind us to someone, that teach us how to grow with that person, that inspire us with love towards them.
It is sometimes the very insignificant moments that remind us how to let each part of our lives become a symphony.
The nuances of a person and their human idiosyncrasies inspire our compassion and our love.

I work my fingers through my hair (now softened by castille soap and conditioner), and puzzled out why it is the small things that matter so much. And pray
I twist my curls into tight strands and pray.
I scratch my scalp and pray.
I scrunch the loose waves into tighter curls.
I feel the loose threads slip through my hand and pray.

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