You hated my hair. Bitterly. Intensely. Beyond all logical thinking, you repeatedly harassed me about getting it cut off, keeping it pulled back, and otherwise covered like I was an aging lady working in a cafeteria lunch line with a trusty hairnet in tow. You heaved with anger that I did not comply. When others complimented it, your ire bubbled deep below the surface and quietly, secretly grew into an untamable beast. It lay dormant for an untold length of time, until that day you unleashed it on me.
I remember the first time you put your hands on me over an argument about my hair. The “cobwebs” as you referred to it. You demanded I get it cut off. I refused and was annoyed when you began to again accuse me of keeping it long for someone else. The sad thing is that, in a way, you were correct, but not in the way you boldly and wrongly assumed. It had nothing to do with any sort of connection that I had with anyone at that point in time.
Among the many things you do not know about me and never will is that my hair and how I choose to wear it are entirely associated with emotional attachments to people in my life. Not just any people, but a person in particular. As in the person of my affection. I cannot explain the reasons why in a way that will make sense, just know that this is just the way things are. The length of my hair is directly symbolic of my attachment to them. So it should follow that when a relationship ends, I am overrun by the urgent need to cut it off. Once I do this, I have moved on, and there isn’t anything you can do to take it back.
I was not ready to move on after I was with Kerwyn the first time. In fact, by the time you invaded my personal space and took over like the dictator that you are, my hair had reached the small of my back. The thought of lobbing it off like it was never there had not once entered my mind. Because my heart was his. So much so that my hair had become another member of my body and the thought of cutting it any more than a necessary maintenance trimming filled me with extreme panic. Panic so strong that if I cut it off, I could surely die.
You had no right to steal my choice away from. The first time you ambushed me in the shower with the scissors was the first time in such a long time that I felt any real spark of emotion. It was foreign to me. I thought something in me was broken, because when you did this thing, when you spun me around before I could step out, pulled my hair into your sledgehammer of a hand and hacked it off, I felt my heart break.
It wasn’t about the hair. It was about the fact that were trying to take everything away from me, including Kerwyn, to render me absolutely dead so you could stomp over me as you pleased. I sobbed uncontrollably for days afterward. And I hated you. I wasn’t over him. I didn’t want to let him go. You took away my control.
But that wasn’t enough for you, to do it once. You decided to come back and do it again. But instead of intense sadness overflowing, I became incensed with anger. I ignored you for days. I slept with my back to you, precariously balanced on the edge of the bed. If you spoke, I did not reply. If you pushed and shoved and slapped and kicked me, I stood motionless like you were not there. I did not move, I did not flinch, I did not respond. I just wanted you to disappear.
It has taken me fifteen months to rectify this transgression you committed against me. This grievous violation of my emotions and my connection to someone I was never able to let go. Your hack job was so bad that the first time I had inches cut off, it was not enough to even it out. I had to go back a second time after three months and get it lobbed off again. The girl doing my hair even commented the second time how cruel she thought you were for doing that. I will be forever grateful to her for her part in restoring my peace.
And hopefully to your dismay, look upon this image and let it burn and boil inside. The thin spots from you dragging me around by my hair have grown back in little by little. And my hair, while not the length I want it, is getting closer and closer every day. Enjoy the fruits of your labor, Kevin.
I have been having a hard time emotionally the past several weeks. Triggers have been hitting me right and left, not even so much as giving me the common courtesy to disguise themselves so I have the time to bear up and endure. I have been pummeled and dumped upon, torn open, and turned inside out. And then I had a random thought yesterday while I was making practical use of my “snow day” from work.
Even since the beginning, in the first days after leaving when I was a wreck, when I felt lost and beaten down, I was making my way back to life. And I wasn’t allowing it happen at its own pace. In my melancholy, that would have taken forever. With the help of some very kind, compassionate, loving people, I pulled myself back up and charged headlong forward into the fog, bolting ahead with reckless abandon just as I did that one afternoon so long ago when I ran from the stranger who would have stuffed me into his car and taken off, leaving behind nothing but the memory of me.
I ripped the remainders of my life out of your dirty hands, and I never looked back. I took it all back. Jehovah, my family, my freedom, and the object of your disdain: the one I could never let go. Would it burn you to know that despite your very thorough efforts I have overcome? Maybe I have not managed to yet get all the pieces into place, but I am alive. Not surviving. I am alive. I have hope, I have peace, I have freedom, independence, and reasonable security. I have friends, a roof over my head, a job I like even though I complain about it sometimes, and hope.
I put my trust in Jehovah that if I maintained my faith and pushed through the hard times, He would never let me fall. In return for my faith and trust in Him when I had no trust to give, my God, my Father, my Protector, and my Refuge blessed me a thousand fold. He gave me back my life. He provided the people I needed to help me heal. He has kept me safe from you, and given me little gifts and ones I can never repay. Above everything I have managed to regain, He gave me back the one thing you never wanted me to have hope for again.
He gave me love. He gave me Kerwyn. And I gave myself back my hair. Thank you for the pain. Thank you for the destruction. The love and rebuilding means that much more. And you can’t ever take that away. I won’t ever let you. I may not be the most attractive woman to ever walk this earth, but my beauty lies within my heart and radiates out through this shell of flesh, bone, and blood, shining upon the world in my smile, my laugh, the glitter in my eyes, and the way I treat others. For this is the beauty Jehovah loves, and this is the beauty Kerwyn cherishes. No, I may not be the most beautiful woman by far, but the beauty of my heart is far more than you ever deserved to behold.