• Fri, Apr 19 2013

Complaint Free April: Complaining About Something Small Made Me Realize I Actually Have Nothing To Complain About

badhighlightsWell, I’ve finally found something in Complaint-Free April that’s tested my mettle. I got bad highlights, y’all.

I know, I know. Bad highlights? SO not a big deal. It’s just hair! But it’s been the first thing I’ve really, really wanted to complain about since the month started.

I have very long, thick, curly hair. I wear it as naturally as possibly, never straighten it and don’t fight its texture at all. I let my hair be my hair, and largely, I’m ok with it. But every once in a while, I get these mad urges to switch it up a little. The bad highlights came out of one of those damn devil-driven urges.

I thought I’d get some low-key, natural-looking light brown highlights because it’s spring! And I want to look kind of loose and hippie-ish and light now that the weather’s warm out. Woohoo, right? Totally reasonable, even for my hair. I heard about a great deal at a salon, made an appointment, puttered around Pinterest looking for inspiration pictures, then went and had the highlights done.

And eeek. I guess I just didn’t really communicate to the colorist what I was looking for, because my hair came out kind of an orange-y ombre, not the sun-kissed caramel I was hoping for. It’s definitely my fault and not that of the colorist, who was super nice and did a great job. You’d think a writer like me would be better at communicating her ideas, but apparently not!

Anyway! I’ve had the highlights for a few days and I’ve been complaining about them a ton, especially on Twitter. I texted all my friends being like “OMG, my hair looks sooooo bad. I look like I have Sun-In from five years ago still growing out!” and I keep squinting my eyes in the mirror, hoping it doesn’t look quite as brassy as I think. Not the best example for the leader of Complaint-Free April to set! I do cut myself a little bit of slack, because feeling confident in the way you look is important to your self-esteem, but I’m also berating my vanity in my head at the same time. I made an appointment to get my hair fixed in just a few days, but it’s going to be expensive, which is something else I started bellyaching to my boyfriend about. Until I woke up this morning, saw the latest news in Boston, and just straight up stopped.

Getting highlights you don’t like is a COMPLETELY minor event, especially in light of all the tragic events that have happened in our country this week (We at Blisstree are sending much love and light to both Boston and West, Texas today and every day). In fact, that goes for every week, and every place where people are suffering and struggling, all around the world. This world is big and crazy and sad and scary and who gives a shit about my hair? Me, sort of, but even I know that it’s a minuscule concern. My paltry upset feelings about my hair have been a powerful reminder to me to be grateful that my own biggest personal problem at this moment is just that: My hair. I have many, many things to be thankful for in my life and you know what? I have, essentially, nothing to complain about.

I’ll admit that now, more than two full weeks into the challenge, trying not to complain is foremost in my mind as it was during the first few days of April. I think about it, sure, but I’m wondering if, by letting myself be less vigilant about my thoughts and words, I’m actually complaining more. I probably am! So maybe my hair setback is actually a blessing in disguise, of sorts, as it’s putting me back on the road to being mindful about what I say and how I say it.

Ok, so now that’ve you read 600+ words about a random vain girl on the internet and her bad highlights, how is your Complaint Free April going? Have you have any minor annoyances (or even huge problems) that have shaken your resolve to stop complaining? How were you affected by the events in the news this week? Share anything you feel is appropriate in the comments.

Photo: Shutterstock

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