Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A lot of Gray Area

So this is me, every single day:

Picture 051

**”Why does gray hair happen?  Gray or white is the base color of everyone’s hair.  There are pigment cells at the base of each hair follicle that produce the natural dominant color of our youth.  Usually around middle age or older, more and more of those pigment cells die and color is lost from individual hairs.”

                                                                  from the back of the generic raisin bran cereal box I read this morning

I don’t have good genes when it comes to the gray hair situation.  Family lore is that my paternal grandma had a gray streak in her hair when she was 17.  Uncle Jim was been totally blonde gray since I can remember (probably his 30s?) and my dad wasn’t far behind.

However, I am an eternal optimist.  I seriously thought I wouldn’t get the wrinkles heritage that comes from being Irish, English and Danish, the Munk hips, or my mom’s bad eyes.  So I, of course, was completely surprised and irritated when the first gray hair started appearing around 27.

I remember discussing this with Adrianne at the time.  She, too, was shocked at my gray hair appearances:  “Seriously?  You’re so young!  I don’t have any.”  And then I remembered that she is blonde (read: can’t see the gray hair, more frequent dye-ing) and called Tammy (a fellow brunette) who nicely confirmed that she was getting some, too.

And you know what makes it worse?

Kids.

My hair grows all lovely and thick while I’m gestating them and then, at about 3 months, it all falls out.  All over said baby (she deserves it), all over the shower, all over my clothes.  Gross.

And you know what grows in?

Yep.  White, wiry, granny hair. 

I hate it.  I really can’t think of an aging thing I like less (except, maybe this tortoise-like metabolism).  Wrinkles? Not that big of a deal.  Sagging stuff?  Can be hidden and pushed up.  Varicose veins?  Can’t see them on the back of calf anyway.

But gray hair really really really makes me feel old.  It’s like I can envision the 70 year old staring back at me. 

I like the wisdom that that 70 year old has.  I like the experiences she’s gained.  I like that she’s done potty-training.

I really don’t like her hair.

37 comments:

Goldie said...

You are still super hot, don't even stress it (stress causes gray hair)

Lindsey said...

No! Don't tell me grey hair is going to move in when I lose this hair!!! I just found my first two weeks ago. I am a little behind you, but most certainly feel your pain.

Christie said...

I am totally pulling out at least three gray hairs a week. I know I should start coloring, but I'm not financially ready to make that kind of commitment. But I'm right there with you - I HATE the gray hairs. They are ugly and evil little wiry beasts.

Celia Fae said...

Great graphic.

I found my first gray hair right before church ten years ago (28) and I burst into tears and was late. Trauma.

They seem so obvious to you but no one else can see them. Promise.

the wrath of khandrea said...

oh yes. yes, yes, yes. i don't color my hair, but just this very morning, i was looking at these skunk stripes above my ears and thinking "i cannot pull all of those out or i will end up with a mohawk."

at least the mohawk part doesn't have any grays.

mandy* said...

You and I have twin heads!! First of all, my hair has never been the same since Cohen came along. I have "wings" because the hair is still growing back from when it fell out. Second, I have grey all over the place. I HATE IT! My friends say they don't see any, but I know they are just being nice. :(

Laurie said...

You look great, but the solution is very simple. Just schedule a colorist. I will never, and I repeat, never be gray.

As to the postpartum shed, I'm still leaving a trail everywhere.

Busy three weeks you had there.

Bekah said...

At least you didn't find them in high school like I did! So serious. Our family (Sherrill side) is cursed in the hair color department, but maybe that's fair because we do have such thick hair. I won't color my hair (opposite of what our mother does and will ever do). I'll grow it long and it'll be thick and white like Grandma Sherrill!

jessica said...

You are in good company my friend. I too have suffered with the gray hair since 26. But like it was mentioned before...good thing your hot and there are clairol coupons almost every week in the paper.

Lauren in GA said...

I am so glad you posted about this because it is seriously bugging me, too. I agree with Andrea I have these streaks of gray hair over my ears...like a witch. Mine appeared about age 29.

Huh...maybe Andrea has a point...I should just get a mowhawk. That would make me look seriously younger, don't cha think?

Lauren in GA said...

I am really vain, I guess because the wrinkles around my eyes are bugging me, too.

miss aubrey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paige said...

That last comment was me. Logged in as aubrey. Ooops. Blonde hair, hips, veins, wrinkles= ME

Mahina said...

i just pulled out 2 white hairs yesterday! not happy! not happy at all!

Ilene said...

I don't know if I have gray or not.

I'm too busy staring at my not-so-lovely love handles.

J'net said...

That is why we all use "high-lights/low-lights"!!!!
Just pick a color and join the rest of us who REALLY don't remember what a "virgin" head of hair looks like!
IF you are still your original color and 27, THAT is a miracle! You so look GREAT for 5 kids NO MATTER what your body is doing aging... I worry for my kids too when it comes to the aging thing and the Sherrill genes, SORRY. But my mom died at 46 SO Grma Paula lived 20+ years longer than my mom did so it's just a toss up!!! LOVE your body and take alfalfa to keep that hair thick! Aloha, A. J'net

AMY said...

I'm 28 and have yet to stress with grey hair... but I like to watch Mike stress about it. It's funny to watch him stare in the mirror and pluck them out one by one with tweezers. His grey is on the side, above his ears... I told him it makes him looked distinguished, and that he should stop plucking the grey, OR the side of his head would start looking like the top. He's not listening.

rubberbandgirl said...

I hear you. I found my second this past month.
:(

Hollyween said...

I first noticed a few when I was 18. Yup. 18!!! So. Not. Fair. But ya know what? I haven't seen one for a while. It could be all the dye jobs. You should try it. Bite the bullet.
I hate getting older. It sucks.

Hollyween said...

For some reason, there was no place to leave a comment on your previous post with the summary. Weird.

Anyway, reading that made me super tired. I don't know how you do it. You are wonder woman. Both in looks AND actions. You amaze!

Jeanelle said...

I so feel your pain. I have to get mine colored/highlighted every three months which I LOATHE because it's so dang expensive. My grays started coming in when I was around 25. I like having highlights -- just hate how fast the grays come back. But like others have said, you're hot so don't stress too much about it.

zeeny said...

So Ryan has tons of grey hair and tries his best to find a grey strand in mine. I have yet to dye my hair, I figure when the grey appears, I'll start! I think mine is genetic though...although my brunette sister has tons of grey hair and has had patches of it since her teens.

Bridget said...

I guess I don't know if I have gray hair. I started coloring my hair myself just because I like it a little bit darker. I haven't ever noticed any but maybe I started the coloring habit early enough. I'll just tell myself I have great genes and I have never and will never get a gray. ;-)

Jacki said...

Yours started at 27. Mine started at 23. That's what I get for being Jim's daughter instead of Mike's, I guess.

Tammy said...

Grey happens, but you don't have to accept it. No, No, No....never do that. I buy the cheap cover up dyes at Rite Aid, Root Touch Up by Clairol I think in Dark Brown, you would probably opt for medium brown. It matches well, is easy and seriously reduces stress from my life because those dreaded greys are hidden away for about a week or 2. love that. And it pro-longs my visits to the expensive hair stylist. ha ha

Momza said...

Just tell yourself you've earned them...it takes the sting away.

Stacy said...

Too funny, but seriously, now I'm freaked out, too. I don't like the thought of pigment cells dying...or feeling middle aged. It's all so sad. Can you blog about something happier, please! By the way, I don't care what you say, you still have the best hair ever and I would trade in a heartbeat, grays and all!

Insightful Nana said...

Don't look too closely at my part.... Oh yes... now that I think about it thank goodness for Photoshop.

Funny... I look in the mirror and wonder who is that staring back at me. Inside I'm not a day older than 27... Okay... maybe 32. But, that's where I draw the line.

I just wish my hair and face knew that!

queenieweenie said...

nothing a trip to the salon won't fix...what a great excuse to be by yourself for a couple hours!

you are one hot mama-gray hair and all.

Elizabeth Caldwell said...

I got bad news for you... at 40, those wiry white hairs show up in your eyebrows... and they are long.

gab said...

Me too. And I don't even have cute bathroom wallpaper to distract me...

Jenibelle said...

Welcome to my world, I am, in real life, about 75% gray. But the world will never know, I will sell everything I own to keep my hair colored. Now I think it's time for my eyebrows too. Why does getting wiser (older) have to suck? Wrinkles, wiry gray hair, sags, hips, bad eyes...there's got to be SOMETHING good about this process!!!

Adrianne said...

I only have six strands of hair, so don't begrudge me their color!

Brooke Romney said...

At least you can pull it out in a super cute bathroom. Now, I don't know if this is true, but my hair gal said to not pull them out, then they grow in much more wiry. she said just bite the bullet and color your hair. I got the great gray gene too.

diane said...

I've been thinking about going all Jaime Lee Curtis natural gray. Then I decided I wanted copper streaks so I figured I'm not ready for the to heck with the world and why should I conform to society's obsession with youth ideas.

missy said...

I laughed when I saw the picture on this post because that could be a picture of me. Every night I assume that same position and do my search. I've stopped pulling them out, though. There's way too many now and I realize that if I keep yanking, I'll go bald and I'd rather be gray than bald!

Pa Pa Jim said...

I'm completely WHITE now Jessica. It started at 40 years. Uncle Jim.