On Having Silver Hair

Not only is my hair turning gray it’s gotten dry. I’m treating myself to a haircut at a better hair salon in March.

Since I feel my current hairdresser screwed up my last haircut. It seems like my hair color has changed overnight.

My hair might turn totally gray within the next 2 years. Keeping my hair its natural color is my way of making a political statement.

Why would a woman be happy to have gray hair? This hair to me is the dawn of freedom from traditional feminine conformity.

From the rule that says you must remain thin attractive and young for the rest of your life or you’re toast in other people’s eyes.

I confess to staring in my bathroom mirror and eyeing the silver hair that is taking over my head. I’m grateful that my hair is turning silver not dishwater gray.

Dare I say I’m excited to be getting silver hair?

This heralds a new chapter in my life–I’m glad to be turning the pages away from history and writing new scenes.

This is why I’m happy to have silver hair.

When I get a haircut at the new hair salon I’ll post a photo of my shining head of hair.

p.s. – I’m too broke to get the upkeep of a dye job : )

No Makeup

No makeup has become a thing for me.

Under the mask I’ve stopped wearing foundation.

Not only that I and others don’t want to hear stories that elected leaders Makeup about what’s going on in society.

Nor do I at least want to be told what to think.

On the cusp of 56 I’ve come to realize that only I can decide what’s right for me.

What I’ve learned:

Love and freedom go hand-in-hand. You can’t have one without the other. Liking yourself without limits is the first step to becoming free.

This birthday year I gave myself permission to be an Artist.

I’m compelled to write in here again about the beauty of individuality.

Wearing No Makeup involves letting the real you show through. Even when you are wearing makeup.

Living an authentic life makes sense to me right now.

The world doesn’t need you and me to be copycats imitating what everyone else does and how they dress and live.

In the coming blog entry I’ll talk about the number-one self-help book I’ve ever read.

It’s a book of help for your Self when you live for likes and are afraid to take a stand.

Are you like me tired of the lies and misinformation being spread like wildfire?

No Makeup. It’s something to think about: telling the truth by being yourself.

Looking in a Cheer-View Mirror

The year is ending. A time when a lot of us look in a rear-view mirror to take stock of our lives. I say it’s time to look at our lives in a cheer-view mirror.

The memories can be sugar and spice or a bitter pill to swallow. Either way I think it’s wise to view our past with acceptance and understanding instead of regret.

Though I appear to be in my thirties or early forties I’m on the cusp of 56. Are you readers younger? Or are some of you older like I am?

The end of the year finds me thinking of the time I was a disc jockey on FM radio in the 1980s.

As I examine my life I take inspiration from Eric Daman the costume designer for Gossip Girl.

In his book You Know You Want It Daman says that we can use elements of our personal history to create our outfits today.

So too I think we can mine this history to uncover facets of our early life that we want to reclaim post 50.

To ask: “What do I want to keep in my life? What do I want to get rid of?”

You can make a comeback at any age. I’m thinking of my younger self with awe and reverence for how I broke the rules.

No–I didn’t conform when I was 22. I played alternative music on the radio. I subverted traditional beauty by using dramatic makeup on my face. I dressed in Avant Garde clothes.

This points to the reality that I don’t want to fade into the woodwork–to be rendered invisible–as I get older.

As a Generation X girl I want to make a statement once again.

Today I swipe on sassy rhubarb lipstick as a way to be bold.

I’m screwing up the courage to call the guy I’m interested in.

A fortune cookie I cracked open years ago proclaimed: Fate loves the fearless.

Hello tomorrow.

Owning Your Authentic Self

Viola Davis was interviewed in the December 2020 issue of InStyle. The word ownership was bandied about.

Editor Laura Brown talked about how Davis has…command.

Viola Davis responded:

I don’t see that command…I think my greatest strength is my authenticity. If I try to channel some other being, I get lost…Growing up in Central Falls [R.I.] as the only kinky-haired chocolate-brown girl, I always was trying to channel the girls who had the Farrah Fawcett look. It had disastrous results. So the only thing I can do is channel my authenticity.

That is really a powerful tool because we spend our entire lives trying to get there. If you are projecting that, that’s what people are attracted to.”

Living your life as a pale imitation of someone else won’t win you fans. Be the full-bodied You.

Like Davis is, I’m 55. This is the year that changes everything. You’re halfway to 60.

Davis is right-on: it’s time to roll-up your sleeves and get to the work of being unapologetically You–the person you were meant to be in this lifetime.

I failed miserably chasing someone else’s dream when I was younger. I fix 36 as the magic number. It was the year I decided to become a mental health activist.

The point is:

Let’s not engage in self-hate or keep internalizing guilt that there’s something wrong with us because we don’t fit a mold.

You know this feeling–it’s when you wake up one day and regret that your life has gone by. You spent so much of it trying to change who you are to fit in and be liked and accepted.

Did this get you anywhere worth going?

The year is ending. As we enter 2021 it’s time to like ourselves without limits.

The journey in expressing our authenticity should be rewarded.

I’m not the same person I was when I was 22.

Are you?

The Difference

It started the year I turned 35.

35 was the year that I could see things changing in my body and in my life.

Twenty years later I’m 55 and the difference is obvious again too.

This is the year I’m aware that I’m getting older. The fact that my life is getting shorter has impacted what I think.

The point is: “Do I want to continue to harbor the same insecurities hang-ups and guilt trips?”

If you ask me 55 is the year to get real with yourself. You could live another 20 years.

Far better to start now to change the things that you feel are holding you back.

For instance: women viewing ourselves with a self-critical eye that harshly assesses every perceived flaw we think we have.

Should you not be a woman who ever questions herself this way I’d like to talk to you to uncover your secret for always-on confidence.

I have started to talk to a therapist. My goal is still to meet a man and have a boyfriend. I will explore this angle starting in January in the new year.

In here I would like to post the famous Marianne Williamson quote.

Williamson gets it right:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.”

Self-esteem is a high beam. When you feel good you can do good for yourself and others.

Shine on.


Facing Our Faces

Magazine articles talk about how the use of filters on selfies has altered how women view themselves.

Seeking perfection is a myth because it implies there can be no growth. Achieving a perfect state there would be no higher you could go.

I’m doing things differently today to dismantle perfectionism.

The idea of not using a filter to change the appearance of my face and body appeals to me.

It’s a radical risk to go outside with your hair undone or your face without makeup. Mostly because women are held to and buy into a higher standard of what’s right.

The part of me that resists want to disrupt the traditional notion of what’s acceptable beauty.

At 55 years old I no longer cover applying a full face of makeup.
Those Sephora makeovers were gorgeous yet impossible to maintain day in and day out.

As well getting dolled up that way in my OKCupid photos did nothing to entrance men to send me messages.

It is in the imperfect where everyone shines as human beings who are our authentic selves.

Now I’m owed a free Sephora makeover. This time I will get one with a twist: to tell the makeup artist to use only 5 products. To design a look I can recreate on my own.

Today I think it’s time to celebrate differentness.

Glossy and stylized images aren’t real.

After the pandemic is over I intend to experiment with makeup in a subtle way.

Bravery is called for no matter how old a woman is.

The daring to look in the mirror and shout:

“I see you. I celebrate you.”

Real beauty is what’s on the inside. Expressing the inner outwardly is the goal. This is when a person is most beautiful:

Not being afraid to express themselves.

In the coming blog entry I talk about my experience getting a haircut during the pandemic. The photo of my haircut is unretouched. Without using a filter. In it I used only foundation blush mascara and lipstick.

You could call this approach a makeunder instead of a makeover.

There’s a thin line between art and artifice.

It’s time to get real. Some of us are getting depressed seeing photo-perfect images on Instagram.

My hope is to empower blog readers to do your own thing not what society tells you to do.

55 and Alive

The older I get I’m aware that “change or die” as I’ve written repeatedly in blog entries here is the only way to live today.

The government can’t help us.

We must carry our ideals with us wherever we go–in bedrooms and boardrooms; in private and public; on trains and planes–everywhere is where we have the chance to make a difference.

Living through menopause in the time of the pandemic and protests has set in me the desire to make a difference in new and improved ways.

I’ve decided to start with this blog. To continue to tell stories to illustrate themes about living and loving Left of the Dial.

The work we have to do is ongoing. We cannot expect those in power in this often troubled society to give up control or cede to the demands of the disenfranchised.

I make the case for not remaining silent on the things that matter to you.

I’m 55 and Alive in the World. What I’m going through could make readers think or light a fire in you to make positive changes.

In future blog entries I want to return to thoughts on how the pandemic has impacted me and what I’ve learned going through a bout of reinvention.

If now is not the time to express your Self when is the time?

For me it all began with spring cleaning in July.

I’ll talk about this next.