I got a haircut and I'm feeling a little poorly about it.
Much of it was maintenance: I had it shortened by a few inches, and thinned so it wasn't so much of the thick mat it had grown into. But the drastic change is that I got rid of the long bangs I've been growing out for about a thousand years and had them hacked into a shortened fringe.
It doesn't suit me. The cut is rough so it needs a delicate, even face to set it off; my face is too square and my features are too blunt. There is too little contrast and no balance; the effect is entirely unsettling.
He had to ruminate for a moment. "It looks ... feisty."
Later, he confessed to missing my sideways "swoop", a style where I parted my hair on one side. He told me that when he first met me again after high school, he thought I looked so sweet and adorable that way that he wanted to give me a hug (but for the obvious reason of his then-girlfriend, did not).
I loved it too. Many women wear their hair the same way. It's a terribly popular style for a reason; it's flattering and it's feminine. I was feeling angst over the change because I knew I had abandoned it for little more reason than it was annoying (the long bangs were annoying to keep tidy because they were never long enough, and it fell into my eyes all the time), and I was sick of it and it wasn't different.
I was sick of it because I was sick of doing what was obvious. Every girl wore their hair that way because it was attractive yet not particularly threatening or confrontational (far from "feisty"), but nobody seemed to care it was so fucking obvious and so right, and nobody cared that it didn't matter whether it was what they liked or what they thought looked interesting.
I've always tempered my desires, to conform to what I thought was the most "suitable" or attainable, rather than what I truly wanted for myself. It was a thought process that constantly reminded me of what I couldn't do or I couldn't have, and to choose things under an endless list of limitations and restrictions, where I made less of a choice than was simply reduced to one.
I was sick of seeing prettier girls and trying so hard to look like them. Maybe if I struck out and did something different, gave myself a distinction that placed me in a different category, a different genre, a different genera (who compares birds to fish?), I could do things for me. Once I didn't look like them at all, I could stop trying to. Because I would have finally embraced that I could never look like other girls and that was ... okay.
I always thought I had to be pretty to do things that weren't conventional. I couldn't get my new haircut because it didn't fit my face; I couldn't wear this or that because of my waist or my legs or my breasts. Other girls could do it because they were so beautiful it didn't matter what they did. But now, it seems I've figured out that because I'm not beautiful and I'm not skinny that I can do whatever shit I want because I have nothing to lose.
I had a tremble in my voice. And even though I didn't have my cute sweep anymore, he hugged me.