The Painful Truth

Heartbreak and hair: a woman’s two greatest pains.

For as long as I can remember these two things have been a source of constant mental and physical torment, sharing many characteristics in their inducement of pain. Both involve the tearing away of something deeply rooted within you and both require lifetime maintenance. You always prepare yourself for the pain; you have no other choice. And while you keep yourself in denial for sometimes months on end, you know that the greatest moment of pain is not only inevitable but fast approaching. Nothing, however, can ever really properly prepare you for that quick and brief – yet excruciating – moment during which you once again become a clean slate.

Your eyes tightly shut themselves close, you press your lips until all circulation stops and they become white and quickly chapped, and your throat clenches in order to keep any possibility of sound escaping completely suppressed.

You take a breath but it’s stuttered; your chest falls back down slowly, with brief pauses of hesitation. You breath out, heavily. You swallow as your throat becomes increasingly dry. And you begin the painful task.

It’s quick, it’s sudden, and it’s always unexpected even at the exact moment that you are separating yourself from something which has been a part of you for so long. Sometimes you will allow a cry to escape, or a stinging gasp. Sometimes you will scream and other times you’ll remain silent, with the sobs remaining within your mouth.

And all that remains is a sticky dewey remnant you wash away when it’s all over.

There is some redness, but it, too, eventually wears off with some simple care.

And then, within a few weeks – you feel prickly all over again. Your eyes pop in disbelief  as you ask yourself how it’s possible for the return of this feeling to be so quick? But it’s a cycle you’ve become accustomed to and begin, once again, to prepare yourself for the imminent pain you’ll be experiencing soon enough.

Just use the blade next time. Quick and painless, even if hella bloody.

One thought on “The Painful Truth

  1. So, I saw you had posted a link to your blog: an article enigmatically titled “The Painful Truth”.
    I clicked, and whilst waiting for the page to load, I read some comments on Google’s Buzz.
    “Oh man, I really don’t want to read about hijab politicking”… But since the page had loaded, I read anyways.

    This whole story left me rather confused.
    Did you just take 5 minutes from me in order to tell me about shaving your head?

    Salams,
    -Naba

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