For the 2nd time I threw caution to the wind, went wild and crazy, having purple highlights put in my graying hair. I admit the color’s more intense and there’s definitely more of it then the 1st time. Let’s get the why question out of the way. I did it to celebrate God’s goodness and care; not to mention I’m crazy about the color purple and every shade thereof. One year ago I severely broke my ankle, tibia and fibula. I had some tough moments and challenging days… okay, weeks and months. God was there with me every step of the way! What better way to celebrate an anniversary of this magnitude than with purple hair. I’m amazed by how many women, in reference to my new “purple-do”, said to me, “You are braver than I”, or “I would never have the courage to do such a thing”. I thought brave… nah. As for courage… perhaps it took a little. Me, the woman who struggles almost daily with one fear or another…. Brave? Me … courageous? I did what I often do when faced with serious contemplation; I looked up the meaning of brave. Brave – ready to face and endure danger or pain; showing courage. Okay, what about courage? Courage – the ability to do something that frightens one; strength in the face of pain or grief. I could have faced emotional pain, put surely not physical. I admit one does not see an elderly woman with purple hair every day. Yet, I was not frightened by the outcome… okay, maybe a wee bit, just a tiny bit nervous. My so called courageous act of bravery in no way compares to those who face real life dangers. Missionaries serving deep in tribal countries, our soldiers in the Middle East, our police officers, our children who go to school among metal detectors, who face gang wars and bullying of all types, and…. you get the idea. These people face life-threatening dangers nearly every day and take it all in stride; now that is courageous and brave.
For me it was not a brave or courageous act but a milestone. Milestone? Yep, a milestone. I’ve finally reached a level of okayness with me. It no longer matters what other people think about such things; at least when it comes to purple hair. Others are not giving definition to my self-worth. The approval of others has dropped down a notch on the totem pole of self-esteem. Yes, I struggle with seeking approval of others. Like you, I want others to like me. I want others to seek my friendship. I desire to have others value my writing, etc. I want others to love me. Why? In part it’s in our DNA. God designed us for relationship; first with him and then with others. Somewhere along the way however relationships became more about being alike rather then different; they became about approval rather than acceptance. We’ve become uncomfortable with that which is different; a little out of the ordinary. God created a world filled with variety. Look at the almost limitless varieties of plant life. Our universe hosts billions upon billions of stars, yet, scientists tell us no two are alike. The human race, a proverbial oddity, none of us quite like the other. Even identical twins have a slight variation in personalities or physical features. Our DNA is unique only to us.
Yep, I believe I have finally attained the freedom to embrace that which is different; to enjoy those little and sometimes large nuances of life. When you look at the life of Jesus, he modeled acceptance. He embraced and loved those who were considered odd, a wee bit quirky and different. As I strive to be more reflective of Christ in my life I am discovering something wonderful… I am learning to embrace me, quirkiness and all! I haven’t attained the 10 on the Richter scale of acceptance for self quite yet… but I am gaining ground everyday 🙂
Until next time,