Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Lenten reset - entering a liminal space



My hair continues to grow. Naturally.

But it's so nothing at the moment - it isn't a shaved head anymore, and it hasn't yet become my hair again, something I would choose.

I find myself in a liminal space with this experience.

Liminal, according to the Oxford dictionary, is of or relating to a transitional or initial stage of a process, or occupying a position at, or on both sides of, a boundary or threshold.
So, I am in a transitional phase, on the threshold of what will be, but not there yet.

It is uncomfortable here. I am not in control.

I was in control of making the decision to shave my head, to enter a season of doing without my hair, without spending any money on it. That was, in part, a decision to relinquish control.

Because I can't do anything to speed up the growing. I can't stick my hair back on, turn back time, or even get hair extensions. I can do nothing but wait.

Wait, and watch.

As I watch, I notice that now it is long enough that it doesn't stand straight up all over, but has begun to lean towards falling, just at the ends. I notice the colour - in certain light it's almost blond, and it's certainly not brown, but mostly it's what I feared from my repressed memory: ash. Part of my impatience is that I want to see what the colour does when it is longer, when there is more of it. And it doesn't dry in the time it takes to get dressed any more. It still dries quickly, but it's long enough to hold the water for a while.

And then, having paid attention to the details, I have found enough curiosity and wonder to, if not spark delight, then to keep me intrigued and give me some peace in this uncomfortable, liminal space.


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