Yesterday as I plopped into my favorite chair with my morning cup of Joe I heard the all too familiar bottle cap notification coming from my phone. It was an email alerting me of my 7 year anniversary as a blogger. 7 years. Within seconds my mind was flooded with images from the past 7 years. Nervously circling the table, staring at the computer, deciding to just go for it and write. Coming home from work to find a laptop waiting for me, given to me by my hubby with a “Happy Birthday” screensaver (which is still my screensaver by the way). Kristen Johnston reading my blog and retweeting it. Wynonna Judd sharing my “Kindness 101” blog that ended up getting over 700 views within hours. https://thatgirlintheredcoat.com/2012/07/21/kindness-101/ Major hair companies following my tales. Magazine editor’s and Hollywood stars following my blog. Writing opportunities coming my way. Strangers thanking me for my hair advice. Strangers laughing at my “Tales of Truth” series. My blog being read across the globe. The list of memories is endless.
Fast forward to today. For those of you familiar with my blog, you are well aware of the struggles I have been having trying to decide which direction my blog and I should take. I began this blog while managing a Salon/retail shop and once the shop closed I felt I didn’t have a platform of which to write. Every single fear and anxiety reared it’s ugly head and I am sad to say, more often than not, they won the battle, not me. I was having coffee with a dear friend yesterday and when I told her of my blogging anniversary I received a high five. During our conversation I came to the realization that I started this blog to spread information and to educate and enlighten, not only for hair care, but for all aspects of daily life, from business to self care to parenting, speaking my truth in hopes that it may give others the courage to do the same. As a reminder that a little kindness goes a long way.
When I woke up this morning, I found myself wondering if my blog related trepidation was due to the 7 year mark. We’ve all heard of the 7 year itch where relationships/marriage is concerned. Maybe it’s the same with goals. It’s all nerves and excitement at the beginning. Lots of new and exciting things happen. Milestones are reached. Celebrations seem to be every other month. Then things slow down, hit a plateau. It doesn’t seem to be as exciting, the shine is off the diamond if you will. It begins to feel like a chore. Other avenues are catching your eye. You feel like throwing in the towel. At least that’s how it felt for me. What I have come to realize and accept is that things change. Who I was when I began this blog I will never be again, and that’s okay. 7 years have passed and I have more experience, in work and in life. I have more of an understanding of who I was, who I am and who I intend to be. I feel I am a good writer. I enjoy it. It’s cathartic. I came to realize my lack of posts for the past 12 months was due to one thing – I was trying to be something and someone I am not. Writing blogs with others opinions in mind, not my own. I began this blog without any thought of what people would think, just the hope that someone would enjoy it and get something out of it. It’s time to get back to that.
Thank you to all my readers, my followers, my family, my friends and those who have shared my tales. More are on the way… hope you enjoy them.
I started this blog to share the tales of my daily escapades in the shop/salon I work in, to give a different perspective, to educate and enlighten the masses about the world of beauty. There is something I feel I need to share with you all, an educational tool if you will. Although today’s blog isn’t about hairspray or rash ravaged bikini lines, it is about beauty. The beauty of honesty and pain. Of sharing your story and speaking your truth.
There is a book that kept coming across my path. Every time I was at the book store, there it was. It was never in the section it was supposed to be in. So, I picked it up, flipped it open to a random page and the first thing I read had me laughing. I bought the book. The book is guts by Kristen Johnston. With each chapter I found I myself laughing, crying or shaking my head in acknowledgement, or all three. You may think I am romanticizing (and if so power to you), this book gave me that last little nudge to take a leap of faith in myself. I am not an addict, nor have I battled an addiction in a traditional sense, but I have battled with the voices in my head saying “You are not good enough”, “You are not pretty enough” and so on. Come on…admit it…we have all been there at least once, ladies and gents alike. Kristen Johnston tells her story truthfully, she puts it out there for all the world to see. Most of us can’t even admit to ourselves in the wee small hours of the morning our shortcomings. I always thought I knew what it meant to have guts. Now I am sure of its definition. Her story confirmed what my father had told me all along…different is good, and she confirmed what I had always felt to be true, sometimes being a smart ass is a good thing.
Here is the reason I am sharing this tale today. I am all for voicing an opinion (if you have been reading my blog you know that) and freedom of speech, when it is the truth, not when it is a lie. Every once and a while I come across or hear an uneducated remark and it gets me a little fired up. Be it about our beloved author, bad hair advice or anything negative in general. (maybe I am entering early menopause…still got the ol’ ovaries).There is difference between being a smart ass and just being an ass.
Choose your words carefully. Do not use the internet as courage. If you won’t say something to someone’s face, maybe you shouldn’t say it at all. Be kind, because in the end, it may be your story being shared.
I know that there is a full moon upon us, and it is the second one of the month. It is referred to as a blue moon, which is where “once in a blue moon” comes from. Well, that phrase doesn’t seem to ring true in my life lately for the events of the last few weeks happened more than once.
In the past few weeks any accomplishment has seemed to be belittled or poo-poo’d (don’t like poo-poo’d- call Websters and lets move on), on more than one occasion my thyroid scar has been pointed out and at, I have been questioned (with rolling eyes) about why I do a blog, oh…and my favorite, that my plans are just dreams and a “cute” way to spend my free time. I must admit, I started to let it get to me. I started to believe the hype.
It was at this moment a woman came into the shop and came right up to me and said “I am looking for that girl in the red coat.”. I shit you not.(pardon my french…sorry Dad). You see, thanks to Twitter, I had been tweeting daily affirmations to some of my rockin’ ladies who own businesses in town and she was always part of the tweets so I began to include her in my daily tweets. I shouted “That’s me!!”. I did, I kind of get excited and at 40 years old I shouted. We both laughed as we shook hands. She asked me about the shop, she listened to what I had to say. My ideas were not belittled, I was not told how “cute” my plans were and not a mention of my scar. That night when I got home, as I entered my bedroom, my copy of GUTS by Kristen Johnston fell of my shelf. Again…I shit you not. Again, although in different circumstances, another person reminded me that different is great.
What I am trying to get at without using a bouncing ball over my words is this…Be kind. I know, I have blogged about this before and all you want to know is what conditioning treatment is the best. (Kpak Revitaluxe…but I digress). Trust me, I will continue to blog about product knowledge, customer service and all things Salon. I will also continue to blog about kindness and courtesy. I will continue to blog about lifting each other up, not pummeling each other and our dreams into the ground. I have said it before and will continue to say it, I believe a little fairy dust goes a long way. Sometimes a little kindness helps remind someone of the beauty that is still in this life. Being excited for another person’s accomplishments, no matter how small they seem to you, can make the difference between their success or failure.
…and quite honestly, no amount of hair color, mousse or hairspray can make cruelty beautiful.