Season of silver

I am not tempted to mask my silver. For, it is nature's way of marking the seasons of life.

I was thrilled when I noticed my first silver hair a few years ago. Note that I said silver, not grey. Silver has a good ring to it, while grey sounds gloomy. Now many more silver hairs have appeared but still the inky black is predominant. I love the way that the silver glints when the light hits it.

Many people colour their hair to cover the grey. But I don’t think I would ever want to cover up my precious silver. They are a sign that I am growing old, that I am entering a different season of life. Silver hair, like laugh lines and wrinkles, add character and depth to a person’s face. They tell a silent story of the person’s life journey. They are souvenirs and badges of honour, to be worn proudly.
Whenever I notice an increase in my treasury of silver, I jokingly tell my children that they have probably contributed to it with the pressures they put on me as the mother of two lovely but rambunctious kids.

My kids hate silver hair. They are afraid that the silver-haired person is on the road to death. I gently remind them that everyone who is born has to die one day. They just don’t want that reminder of mortality staring them in their face, I suppose.

There is a lady I know whose hair is absolutely snow white – not a single black hair to mar the pristine whiteness. It is a snowy cap crowning her head. She said that her hair turned totally white following chemotherapy. It looks gorgeous on her. My maternal grandmother had mostly silver hair interspersed with a little black. She looked very elegant and regal with that silvery crown.

When we were children, my dad used to pay us two paise for every silver hair we plucked. It was fun, searching for the elusive silver hair and plucking it out by the root. We also earned some pocket money in the bargain. But as the relentless silvery march started, my dad gracefully accepted that it was a losing battle and flaunted his salt and pepper hair.

My father-in-law had thick, curly black hair. When I was newly married, I complimented him on his having a full head of black hair well past his retirement. He just gave me an enigmatic smile. It was only months later that the mystery was solved when I saw him painstakingly applying hair dye. When I caught his eye, he gave me a mischievous smile. No wonder he hadn’t commented on my compliment! But I couldn’t help smiling back.

I have nothing against those who choose to dye. It is a personal choice, and I respect the pains they take to look young. But despite the high profile brand ambassadors touting various hair colour products, I am not tempted to mask my silver. I will wear my silver with pride. In this case, silver is not the second prize. It is the real deal. It is the icing on the cake, nature’s way of marking the seasons of life. It is the season of silver – of maturity and wisdom that comes with experience. Viva la silver!

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