Throwback Thursday #52 – Transitions and Modifications

Here we are again, taking a trip back in time. This week might take a little memory work to recall a few things, but it should be fun.

Part of growing up is finding you own way of self expression. This comes about in many ways so think back. Are you ready?

If you care to join us, it’s easy.

  • Write your own post sharing your memories and leave a pingback to this post in the comments.
  • You can use the photo above in your post to make it easier to find.
  • Tag it with #TBTMemory or #IRememberWhen.
  • If you do not wish to write your own post, feel free to tell your story in the comments below.

This week’s prompt is: Transitions and Modifications

You can either free write using these questions as inspiration or answer the question as they are.

  1. Think about your first haircut. We’re you the kid that cut your own hair? Did you go to a salon or did your parents cut your hair? Did your parents save a lock of your hair?
  2. How about shaving? Fathers often teach their sons to shave. Most girls I know, decided for themselves when to shave their legs and their underarms. Some cultures do not shave at all.
  3. Did you alter your clothes? Cut jeans into cut-offs? Cut the sleeves off t-shirts? Wear graphic tees? Tie-dyes? Sew patches on your jeans?
  4. Was there a time you remember challenging the authority in your household. Do you remember the first time you found your voice?
  5. What about piercings? Girls getting their ears pierced was a rite of passage for girls. Then boys started getting one ear pierced. As time passed, piercings became more mainstream and accepted.
  6. Did you walk on the wild side? Smoking? Drinking? Did your parents know?
  7. What about tattoos? Did you get a tattoo while still living at home? Did your parents approve?
  8. What about language? Was swearing allowed in your family?  Did you use the same language around your friends as you did at home with your family?
  9. Think back to high school. Girls, did you iron your hair? Did you color your hair? (using Sun-in counts!) Guys, did you grow a beard or moustache? Did you grow your hair long? Feel free to share a photo of yourself back in the day.
  10. Many people think our authentic self is the person we were as young children. Are you still inherently the same person you were as a child or have you changed your personality and demeanor along the way?

My response follows.

I remember having long hair for a short while because I remember my mother French braiding my hair. It did not last long as I was given a pixie haircut before I started school. I remember a woman in the Valley named Linda who gave us all haircuts.  I remember well the gentle tugging of my head as she gave me the short razor cut. After I went to school, I remember my grandmother sending a note to school allowing me to walk into town to the beauty shop to get a haircut. I would have been in fourth grade. I hated the short hair!

I remember well the first time I decided to shave my legs. We lived in Ohio so I was in sixth grade. I did not ask permission and did not really know what I was doing. I remember that I cut my shins, though, and had to get my mom to help me bandage my leg! She never chastized me and only suggested I could have asked for help. Even with the bandaids on my shins, I still remember the soft feeling of my legs with no hair on them!

I did alter my clothes, but not until I was in high school and after. I sewed patches all over my jeans. I also frayed the bottoms of my jeans so they had an inch or so of fringe at the at the bottom. I tied cotton shirts at my midfriff and cut fringes into the bottoms of my t-shirts. By this time my hair was long and straight and I looked the part of a hippie I suppose.

I was an obedient child and never really challenged my parents much. I remember being upset with my parents if I wanted to go somewhere and they would not allow me to go (this was rare – they were fairly liberal with me). I would shut myself into my bedroom and brood thinking I would show them! Ha! I doubt now they even noticed.

In grade school I remember my best friend and I pretending we had our ears pierced. We went all out to make the bluff seem real. We carried a little bottle of water, pretending it was alcohol and would go to the bathroom at school and dab the water around out screwback earrings. I did not actually get my ears pierced until after I separated from my first husband. It was an act of defiance. I also cut my hair from waist length to shoulder length. Both things he did not want me to do. Oh the sweet taste of freedom!

I did not drink or smoke. I was completely turned off by smoking – perhaps because I had the chore of cleaning ashtrays at home. So disgusting! My father would give me a shot of whiskey if I had bad menstrual cramps – I hated the taste. I remember my mother giving me sips of her mixed drinks. She wanted me to recognize the taste in case someone ever tried to slip me a Mickey. When I joined the Air Force, I remember going out with friends to the clubs and ordering pitchers of beer for the table. I would have the same glass of beer in front of me at the end of the night. I never liked the taste of beer until much later in life.

I never had a tattoo or ever really had a desire for one until my sisters passed away. I thought about having this tattooed on the inside of my forearm – I’ll see you on the other side of the stars.

My parents never cursed much so I never really picked up the habit. I did pick up a few phrases and words along the years but I rarely use them – and only in private conversation with close friends.

As I got older, I let my hair grow very long. It was naturally straight, so I had no need to straighten it, but that did not stop me from trying to iron it a time or two. I tried Sun-In a few times but it did not do much to my dark brown hair. I inherited my mother’s premature gray hair and started coloring it in my late 20’s. Now it is all naturally white!

I think I am still that same little girl at heart. I have experienced things I never imagined I would and lost my way a few times, but somehow I have managed to keep my hopeful perspective in life.