My stomach churns and I can feel myself shaking. I’m utterly anxious.
And then I remember: I did this purely for myself, and there is no going back.
I touch my cheekbones and look at my face from every angle. It’s so unfamiliar—different to yesterday. My jaw and nose are sharper, more masculine.
I turn away from the mirror. I am a stranger. Without the strands of black hair draping down my neck, I am no longer buffered from the outside world.
Now I can’t hide, not even from myself.
But I confess that I stand taller, I’m more grounded, and maybe, I feel close to invincible.
Is this how men feel? Like they have a right to show their face and look you in the eye, staking their claim wherever they stand?
I told my hairdresser that I wanted to look like a boy. I guess, I just didn’t expect to feel like one.
So I have been having secret conversations with myself, questioning the state of my femininity.
I have to learn to become accustomed to this face, one that I can’t escape with eyebrows that I over-plucked as a teenager, a nose with a bump, and cheekbones and lips that I wish were more defined.
I know that a haircut isn’t life changing, yet the process is emotional, transformative, and in the smallest way, possibly life affirming—bringing you closer to the person you really are…on the inside.
Style File: Salasai skirt (now on sale here) paired with a top that I bought from a market in Auckland about ten years ago and have recently rediscovered. I’m pleased that I kept it because it’s been perfect for this hot Wellington weather.