I swear that it’s natural!

Ah, summer. It seemed as though it would never arrive in Chicagoland. It’s been raining for months and until this week, the temps never got past 83.  We had 30 degree temperature changes in a single day. And now the heat and humidity arrived. This means that the constant battle of “It’s not hot enough to turn on the a/c” and “Oh my God, I’m melting” has commenced. I bet you can guess which one is me.  Considering the fact that I grew up in South Florida, you’d think that summer would be a snap. Nope, it’s not. I want lots and lots of cool air blowing on me all day long.  I become one enormous sweaty thing while my other half sits there cool as a cucumber. How does he do it? Ice in his shoes? A fan secreted somewhere on his person? All I know is he never sweats while I’m gingerly peeling my flesh off the leather furniture.  I hate snow and cold but the extreme opposite is no picnic. The weather is nice for about 4 weeks a year.

Of course, the best (read “worst) part of summertime is my hair.  Like that character in the “Peanuts” comic strip, I have naturally curly hair.  During this time of year, I can actually feel it expand as it dries. I’ve tried every product that promised me to smooth it out, reduce the frizziness, give it a nice shine. Liars, all of them. Nothing helps.  I don’t wear hats unless I’m willing to walk around with a circular dent in my hair afterwards. I’m not. So here I am.  Wild hair, going in all directions, feeling messy. That’s usually when someone with shiny, smooth hair asks me if it’s natural. Why would I do this on purpose? That’s when confusion sets in. Do people still get perms? These straight haired women, as it’s rarely men, tell me they have wavy hair and would love hair like mine. I don’t believe they’re thinking this through. No more smooth ponytails, no more silky hair hanging down their backs. I’ve flat ironed my tresses a few times. While it’s looks nice and I can finally flip my hair around like those models in commercials, it just didn’t feel like me.

Since I’m not willing to get a buzz cut, I’ve learned to embrace my curls. They do what they want based on the weather and I go along for the ride. Don’t even get me started on my gray hair. That’s another conversation for a different time.  Letting my freak flag fly!

About Julie Brandon

60ish poet/playwright/blogger living near the Windy City
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2 Responses to I swear that it’s natural!

  1. Beth says:

    I can feel my hair expand as it dries as well! I usually will ask people, sometimes strangers, often times strangers, let me know if my hair gets too big? Usually the response is “ you are so lucky to have such full hair 😳!! Then I will go to the bathroom and get out my mini spray bottle of conditioner water tucked in my purse and say “ settle down nutter” and spray away. But we are blessed. So next time I’ll kiss my bottle before I dampen down the mess.


  2. Maureen Navadomskis says:

    I’m a spring or fall weather person – not a fan of the extremes in either direction!

    Back in the day, I permed my hair once or twice. Never really liked it like that, though. I think curly hair looks nice – just not on me!


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