Some of my friends back in college used to know that whenever I have my hair cut, there is always a meaning behind it. They knew about that because I told them so. Hahaha!
Based on the statistics completely made up by myself, 90% of women who cut their hair have a somewhat-serious thing going on in their life. May it be a part of their moving-on from a heartbreak, a paradigm shift in beauty, a necessity for the role in a new movie (like Anne Hathaway’s), a desperate attempt to feel that something is changing in their lives, or a hair disaster just happened leaving them with the only choice to have it cut short, one could conclude that there is something else beyond the haircut.
I began to wear my hair short — as in pixie short — a few months before I entered Med school. And I could still remember until now the confused and surprised faces of the people who saw me the night I entered the room with my seven-inch hair.
Three years later, my hair is still short. I had it grow longer than the usual, but had it cut after a few months. I just couldn’t get over the unconventional beauty in having one. The thing with having a short hair is that it opens you up to the strange feeling of a different kind of freedom and vulnerability. You’ll never discover this unless you have your hair cut really short.
When your hair is short, your eyes become prominent. There is no long, beautiful locks to look to and so the next thing people see in you is your eyes. And for me, that is both wonderful and scary. Haha!
Then, people get to see a better look of the totality of your face — which would also mean that your zit scars will be brutally visible and your fresh zits will be out there like attention-loving divas. Everything just seems to be laid out there, open for everyone to see and criticize. Your authenticity and your flaws. Your quirks and your imperfections. Your heart and your soul.
. . . . .
One of the most important things having a short hair taught me is the paradigm shift on beauty. Of course, I know that in this society you still have to be aesthetically pleasing. At least, be presentable. But as mentioned above, where do you go next when your bare humanity is already there staring back at you on the mirror? How do you make yourself presentable and aesthetically pleasing when you can’t reconcile with the truth about how you really look like?
Nowadays, majority of the women I meet just seem to want to have their eyebrows like those of the Kardashians, or their lips like that of Angeline Jolie, or their skin complexion like that of the Korean stars. They want zero visibility of pores, tamed eyebrows, no pimple marks, luscious lips, and definitely no eye bags (I have lived my life with people never feeling sorry for commenting on how puffy and dark my eye bags are, but I’m still fine. No harm done. What’s the fuss, ladies?).
I have nothing against with people who see applying make-up as an art (which it really is), and I absolutely have nothing to prove in this writing. But I just want to say that beauty goes beyond the face…and the hair. You know, just a wake-up call. Or a point to ponder. Any woman could write their thesis on how improving their physical beauty makes them feel good, but I say, you don’t have to feel good about yourself; you have to know and believe and live it.
You know beauty when you can open your front door to an unexpected visitor in the morning with your just-woke-up face (the real, unfiltered face, please) and brighten your front yard just with your smile. You know beauty when you rushed to your 7 AM class without having the time to apply your matte lipstick, and not get fidgety all throughout the day worrying that your classmates have now seen The-Beast side of you. You know beauty when you’re on your unflattering, jogging pants, running all over the place, sweating nonstop, just to capture moments in this side of eternity with your humble Canon EOS 1300D. You know beauty when no one’s giving you any compliment about how you look like, and you are neither insecured nor negatively affected by it.
When you are stripped off of the things which “adds up” or “enhances” your “natural” beauty, where do you go next? When there are no selfies to be filtered, uploaded, and “liked,” where do you go next? When someone else has thigh gaps and you do not have and will never have, where do you go next? When someone else performs better than you, where do you go next? When someone else is being admired and pursued by many men while you seem to be a wildflower which no one ever notices, where do you go next?
When it comes to lasting beauty, how do you make your perfectly on point eyebrows last? When it comes to praying for the lost, how do you kneel your perfectly white knees on the floor? When it comes to extending your heart and life to those who are not just poor in money but and/or poor in spirit, how do you reach out your perfectly manicured fingernails? When it comes to building others up, sharing the burdens of your brothers and sisters in Christ, how will you ever be able to do it when all that matters to you is looking good in the eyes of the world?
I am not telling you to shut yourself off from social media sites, or never ever wear a make-up anymore. What I’m saying is, if beauty itself is created by God Himself (which it is), isn’t it logical that beauty then is never that of the physical only? Our God is a mighty, powerful, gracious, compassionate, just, loving, and merciful God. In this case, beauty then must have been an expression of the very nature of God. If the first thing which comes into our mind when we talk about beauty is that of “looking good,” then we are downplaying the reality of and the power in beauty.
It seems that I went a long way from simply having a short hair, huh? I guess so — but maybe not. Maybe it really is necessary to have something cut from my life to realize these truths about life and about God. What I learned from Beauty Himself is that it is never about myself, but all about Him. If the beauty I claim that I possess draws people towards me, then it is not real beauty. Real beauty points people to the source and definition of it: GOD.
Featured image via pinterest.com