Something I've aways identified with, in my opinion, is my hair. Since I was a little girl, I noticed my hair was always different than most of my friends. Bigger, frizzier. I always needed more products, more equipment and more time to get ready than everyone. My locks were first straight and fluffy, then shifted to curly and big when I hit puberty. I remember so clearly comparing my best friend, Jenna’s, ponytail to mine when we were in middle school. Hers was literally a fourth of mine. I also remember having my Cheerleading coach my senior year in high school tell us we had to keep our hair long enough to put in a ponytail for games and competition. I loved the sass on her face two days later when I had chopped it all off. Needless to say I have a strong pattern of growing my hair out for years then having a dramatic revamp.
Though I did just that today, the feeling was completely different. I haven’t cut my hair since 2014. I take that back, one trim about 18 months ago. But I’m talking about making a change. The past two years have been full of changes but one thing I’ve held on to tightly are my locks. They wrapped me up often on the left side of my neck. Highlighted my “good side,” when I was completely alone in a new city. They’ve protected me from the NYC & VA winters giving me warmth under and beanies. I’ve dyed them all sorts of colors to express how I was feeling both on my own and at the salon. Every time the stylist asked to cut some off, I’d quickly refuse, no matter how damaged the ends were. This nest has been with me through some of the hardest cries and conversations I’ve ever had in my life, along with the most sincere times that have made me completely speechless.
Guys, I know its just hair.
But lately, I’m unpacking what I identify myself with. What I’m attached to and why. Sutra 1.12 - Abhyasa vairagyabhyam tat nirodhah. Fancy for Practice & Non-attachment. Non-attachment being an essential companion to practice.
Take a minute and observe what you think identifies you. Are you gripping onto something so tight that has nothing to do with your inner light? I definitely did. And still do, but it all starts somewhere.