I like A Softer World a great deal. It is my kind of pretentious, and puts some sentiments very well.
Last week I cut off most (fourteen inches) of my hair for The Rapunzel Foundation, which makes wigs for children who've lost their hair due to chemotherapy or for other health reasons. I have had long hair since I was a tiny little thing, so it was a bit daunting. I decided on it about a year ago when my hair was nearly long enough, and have been semi-binding myself into it by responding to "Wow, you're hair's getting so long!" with "Yeah, I'm growing it to donate to an organisation that makes wigs for cancer patients." The more people to know about it, the worse it would look if I copped out.
I had misgivings about the fact of having misgivings. My general attitude to charity and volunteering is "I can, so why wouldn't I?" but I did have to steel myself for this. Part of it stems from having had long hair forever, and I'm not interesting enough for dramatic changes. Part of it, though, is self-consciousness - long hair is feminine and pretty and the done thing, and not being the done thing can be a bit of a statement, and I am a sucker for the invisibility conferred by conformity. I felt guilty wanting to place that over a child feeling ugly and not themselves. So what pushed me in the end was not just a desire to help, but a desire to be - or at least act like - the kind of person who values the happiness of others more than her own temporary self-consciousness.
I also got it cut the day my dog died, so wasn't really going to care how my hair looked.
That was taken before I had washed my hair, significantly less perfectly sculpted now. I think my face is a little too chubby for it to look as well as it might, but I still like it. It is still a novelty to reach back and ruffle, or go to wash my hair and find no hair there. Bizarro! Incidentally, that big coldsore turned out to be two coldsores which had melded together. Awesome.
Also, I am not good at being stereotypically girlie in many regards. Hair is one of them, just never got the hang of it. Part of me wants to learn how one does hair while it's short and manageable, but that probably won't happen.
Fourteen inches of my hair.
I mentioned to the hair school what it was for, and they wouydn't let me pay at the end. People are just lovely sometimes.