I looked in the mirror after washing my hands for dinner at Momo's, ran my fingers through my hair, then stopped, and looked closer. I leaned forward, lifted a hand, and gently sifted a single strand of silver out from the rest of my hair. I called Brooke to come with me into the bathroom light, and looked again, and asked, "Is that really...?"
"A gray hair? Do you have a gray hair?" she asked.
"I think I do!" I replied, and I laughed. I must be the first woman who noticed her first gray hair, and thought about *not* dying her hair any more. I probably will keep it up, because I do like being a red head. But honestly, I remember seeing the strands of silver at Michael's temples, and thinking how pretty they were against the dark of his hair. This one strand on my head shines against the rest and glitters in the light, and for all it might mean in terms of my surrendered youth and the inexorable march of time, it is beautiful to me, and precious in a way I don't really understand.
I laughed, and rushed out to tell my mother, and they probably all think I'm insane. How can I explain to anyone who clings to their own youth as a golden age that my twenties have been the hardest time of my life, and I can only hope to rise out of them into the rest of my life like a phoenix. I know in my soul that I have the strength and grace for this. That in fact this is what I do every day that I get up and greet the world with an open heart full of faith and hope and love. This is what I intend to do all my life, and I hope that life is a long one. Long enough for every hair on my head to turn.
So bring it on, gray hair! I'm ready!