Monday, April 21, 2008

suspended animation

my spunky daughter

It's been a while. I've been meaning to report here with some progress on some of my recent subjects. Namely, the haircut conundrum and the push-up endeavor. I actually titled this post 'progress report' but this week's This American Life episode about cryogenics is fresh in my head and it seemed fitting. It's been cold here. And I've been hovering, waiting, freezing. This might be a missive from the insulated chamber. Don't mind my choppy thoughts and empty complexion: I'm not completely thawed yet.

Exactly three seconds before I grabbed my haircutting shears and whacked off the front of my hair in some imprecise approximation of the same shorty-bang bob I sported six or or so years ago, I was convinced that I'd give long hair one last hurrah and see what braids are like come summer. But, oh, the allure of sharp metal on dry hair. The scissors were just right there. Okay, so I had to open the drawer and root around for them a bit. But then they were in my hand and I had a fist full of hair and when you have scissors in one hand and hair in the other, there's really only one thing to do. Because deciding could really take all day. And growing hair is so passive, it's a decision by default, a body tagging along on the ride of so many hair follicles, hoping it works out in the end. Vanity thine name is wonky-hormone induced existential crisis. I know all about decisions and defaults. Snip. And that first cut is always such a relief. Yes. I can do this. It's a little thing, but it's mine. I trimmed up the sides and back, too. Which isn't as bold and important at all as harnessing some new career or returning to school or creating some fantastic, inspiring piece of something worth remembering, but there are only so many decisions I can make while wearing pajamas in the bathroom.

For the first week or so after my push-up test, I faithfully practiced every day. I admit to having slacked some since then, but BUT! I am now doing ten solid, serious pushups every time I try. Near daily, not quite. I don't think I've built stronger muscles so rapidly, rather I think this experiment indicates that exercise is, indeed, partially a practice in muscle memory. My arms know what to do now. They drive down the street without thinking and turn into the driveway while my thoughts are elsewhere. I just personified my arms *and* gave them a driver's license. Which is the least I could do, really, since I've been secretly fond of my shoulders for many years, hushing my self-deprecation just long enough to notice how nice and strong they are (and the freckles, so cute, but, no, such worrisome little reminders of excessive sun exposure, shhh).


Angelina said...

great return post! I love the hair. I tried to come see it in person but you weren't home.

Lisa said...

I can't wait to see the hair in real life!

I must admit that you have somewhat inspired my to improve my upper body strength. I've not been doing it as regularly as I should if I was making a serious effort, but a couple times per week, I do some plank thingies against the wall and believe I have improved slightly. I guess the real test will be when I can manage at least one pushup!

Blogging Molly said...

as soon as you're done thawing you'll have to take some pictures of those cute shoulders. i'm sure they look great with the hair.