Thursday, March 17, 2011

Off Topic: The Last Eight Months

“I need a place to spend the day,
Where no one says to go or stay,
Where I can take my pen and draw
The girl I mean to be.”
– The Secret Garden
What happens when you wake up and you look in the mirror and see a face you haven’t seen in almost a year?
I’ll tell you. You question if the past year even happened.
Since the middle of July I let my hair just grow. I was avoiding the hurt in an unusual way for me. Normally, I steep & wallow. This time I took the advice of everyone else, jump into something new – someone new. I had made poor decisions regarding the attempt of being friends with my ex-girlfriend while casually messing around with someone who was in her six degrees of separation circle. I had a nice little fohawk, my hair was subject to my nickname of Jimmy Neutron, it was part of my identity – it completed my notion of Dapper. This woman understood my butch dynamic; I didn’t have to explain anything. So it felt easy, although it was not easy.
After the exchange of hurtful words, a few “forget you’s” and the statement of never contact me again (as we were both to blame for the demise) I knew that the old feelings I tried to escape and cover up with bravado and machismo were still there behind everything. I decided to no longer be “Jimmy” and to be Hollie. I grew my hair out, became busy doing shows, dedicated time to running and then got a job.
The past two weeks I had been contemplating cutting my hair. Several things occurred to spark this decision. 1. It was the 3rd time that a man did not know I was gay at first sight. 2. I had money to get a haircut. 3. Warmer weather with thicker long hair was not conducive to my running. 4. It was difficult rocking a skinny tie with this wavy bouncy hair.
When asking for opinions about my hair I knew that there were several women who’d be heartbroken about my “long” locks being chopped off.  Then there were others who would be excited to see Dapper Dan come back into the picture. Then a good woman reminded me to do it for myself and I took a few days to think about it. The next morning I had to blow out my hair, it took 20 minutes, it took several products, it took too much time and the end product was really big hair. I made the decision to cut it.
The Aftermath
I went in yesterday and got a razor cut (which is my favorite type – I like the sound the razor makes on my hair) and I walked out with my fohawk. It was a beautiful spring day. I was in short sleeves. I almost put the top down. However, that is when it hit me. I was in Albany. It was a beautiful sunny day. I felt good. This doesn’t freak most people out. Me, it makes me relive things. One of my friends hates that I live in memories. Yet, I know its part of my makeup. I looked in the mirror and in an instant, the past eight months disappeared. The past eight months have been my strongest and I hate that one look in the mirror made me question it.
The same good woman who reminded me to get a haircut for myself, reminded me to take baby steps, then in our last conversation she reminded me that short hair or long hair, it’s still the same Hollie. While I know it’s true, I just have to get used to the differences. I was hiding, from a lot of things. Now, I'm done hiding.
“I could never rescue you
All you ever wanted
But I could never rescue you
No matter how I tried
All I could do was love you hard
And let you go”
– The Last Five Years

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