Thursday, February 25, 2010

Going gray

I have a photo shoot on Saturday and as always, I will make a beeline for the salon the day before or 2 days before the event. My gray hair needs to be covered yet again or else the image of me with salt-and-pepper hair at the (ahem) young age of 43 will be the one preserved for posterity.

Being a not so vain person, I have always entertained the idea of going gray totally. No more trips to the salon for a 2-hour hair dye job every 6 weeks, no more damaged hair. I love the idea so much I want to embrace it and just celebrate my going into middle age. But everyone in my family, from my father, mother, brother and sisters, wouldn't hear of it. My dad would go as far as to scold me for not having my hair colored. My brother and sister, whenever they would be in town from abroad, would bring me to a salon to let me have a hair coloring session—their treat. Only my son, who likes Taylor Hicks, wants me to go totally gray.

Even my friends have become concerned. Patsy, when she learned I was guesting on a TV show sometime ago, said to herself, “I hope Karen dyes her hair.” (I did.) Gaby, when I met her for breakfast last month with other friends, greeted us with, “So, did you girls have your hair colored already?”

Let me see. I think I was in 2nd year high school when I first noticed I had a strand or two of white hair. One of my nephews had his first white hair at grade 7. A niece in her late 20s has a lot of them too, but she has more black than white hair and she looks like a college student, so you wouldn't notice them. It's something we inherited from both of my parents, I guess. My son, meanwhile, is hoping he will have gray hair soon.

I think the gray hair started becoming more noticeable though, some 7 to 10 years ago. Sometimes it's relaxing to spend 2 hours at the salon for a hair coloring job, but at other times it's an added item on my to-do list on a busy week that it has become a chore. I tried a do-it-yourself hair color kit at home twice on the advice of my friends Jenny and Tina, but I get back pains after a session, what with all the bending I have to do to color, rinse, shampoo, rinse, condition, and final-rinse my hair.

“How come in the US, it's not a big deal to go gray?” I asked my sister one time. Just look at this photo below. She said it's because Caucasians' fairer skin doesn't make gray hair look that stark on a person.

gray hair

Recently, I was in the restroom at church when a lady attendant said, “Miss, bata ka pa di ba? (Miss, you're still young, right?)” I smiled and said yes, thinking it was a compliment. Then she said, “Sabi na nga ba eh. Ang dami mo kasing puting buhok. (I knew it. But you have a lot of white hair.)”

Before another attendant engages me in a talk like that again, I've decided to go to the salon today. As in, now na. Before it's crunch time for deadlines, before I get hungry for lunch, before I want to crawl back to bed for a nap, before I watch the replay of last night's American Idol and Glee, before I change my mind. So let's go, sago.

BOOK OF THE WEEK: "Many of us don't know it is possible to go from romanticizing about rest to actually resting in today's world." This was what was written on the back cover of Rest Assured: Devotions for Souls in a Restless World by Nancy McGuirk (published locally by OMF Literature). Just a few minutes a day reading the Bible verses quoted in each chapter and the short write-up that follows can remind us that peace can be gained as we draw nearer to Jesus, the Prince of Peace.

VERSE OF THE WEEK: "Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you." Isaiah 46:4
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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Patrick Henry Hughes - Inspirational Story

Just how far can a father’s love go?

I was on Facebook early this morning as soon as my teenage son left for school, and saw this heartwarming video of Patrick Henry Hughes, a young man born blind who sees his disability as a possibility. Indeed, everything seems possible for Patrick, who can play the piano very well and is even in his university's marching band.

But what struck me most is the man behind him literally pushing him to be the best he can be. It's his dad, who marches with him (or rather pushes his wheelchair) at college games while Patrick plays his trombone.

To do this, dad works the graveyard shift at UPS (his shift starts at 11 p.m.), and joins Patrick in the daytime for his classes and band practice. What a dad!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

In a pink state of mind

As I have been staring at my computer for most part of the day today, I finally noticed how blah my e-mail accounts look. My Gmail, Hotmail, and Yahoo Mail look so blue (and yes they are blue). Now why do I have more than one e-mail account, you may ask. It's my way of compartmentalizing my life. I use my Hotmail to correspond with my high school batch mates, Gmail for work stuff, and 3 Yahoo Mail accounts for my grade school batch, my writer friends, and for family and friends.

Anyway, back to being blue. Blue brings a state of calmness but sometimes we all need a little perking up. And so I checked the settings and found that Gmail and Hotmail have a cherry blossom theme, and Yahoo can let you have your page in bubblegum pink. Now everything on my screen looks pink.

I'm still in a pink mood as I write this and so I'm sharing with you some pink flowers to brighten your day.

BOOK OF THE WEEK: I just finished For Richer For Poorer: Why the Rich Get Richer and the Poor Get Poorer by Chinkee Tan. The poor think of surviving today; the rich think of saving for tomorrow. Maybe it's time we rethink the way we think.

VERSE OF THE WEEK: "And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Matthew 6:28-30