hair dye and the un-boring Life.


“The unexamined life is not worth living.” – Socrates

I worked for Mother Church for six and a half years. Working for her was my go-to excuse for a {short} list of things I wouldn’t/couldn’t do. The top two things on that list?

  1. Dye my hair (even just a section) a non-natural color.
  2. Get a tattoo.

Well, now I don’t work for Mother Church, so I figured I could tackle at least one of those items on my list. At Target this weekend, my husband and I picked out a kit so I could dye part of my hair (which part was yet to be determined) bright red, fire-engine red.

We got home that night, put our daughter to bed, and I eagerly read all the instructions. It was go time. I told my husband my plan for what part(s) of my hair I wanted to bleach and dye. He…was not so sure. It turned into a fairly long, drawn out conversation that started about hair and turned into my burning desire to not be boring.

When I was working I could easily set goals. I did things. I prayed about and implemented new programs, new ideas, new ways of doing things. Before I got married I’d take road trips wherever I wanted simply because I could. I’d go for a drive, find a trail, and just hike with no plan in mind. Then I got married and someone wanted to know just which trail I was hiking and how long I’d be gone for. Then I became a mom and hiking in the winter became much less feasible.

As I told my husband about this ache to not be boring, he told me that even if I dyed my hair or took our daughter on one of my random treks, that wouldn’t really change anything. But, but, it has to! Look at all of these cool, hip things I am doing! Trips! Hair! Rebellion! I’m not boring! But really, he was right. I could dye my hair, pack up our daughter and fly to a city just for a day and it wouldn’t change anything.

Being boring, or not being boring, isn’t about proving my un-boringness to the world. Hair dye and random trips are fleeting, but this fulfilled, meaningful life I’m seeking comes from within. If I find meaning and purpose in what I’m doing, then it isn’t boring. The fact of the matter is that no matter what I do, someone can always peer into my life and say it is boring. Oh, you work for the Catholic Church? How boring. You’re a stay/work at home mom? How boring. What I do will never change how people see me, but how I see myself is what matters.

Is it luxurious to take my daughter to daily Mass in the same way that it is luxurious to hop on a plane and spend the day in a different city just because? No, it isn’t, but if i find more purpose in taking Monkey to daily Mass and exposing her to the beauty of the liturgy, then that’s where I need to be. A daily routine with a growing baby may seem mundane to others (even to myself somedays), but when the I lose the forest (raising a saint) for the trees (dirty diapers and fussy babies who don’t like naps), then what I do is boring.

This life I’m leading, this life I’ve been called to may not – at least at the present – be the most outwardly adventurous life, but it is still beautiful. I may not be hiking literal mountains, but I’m watching my daughter reach new heights. Whether my hair gets dyed a wild color or not, if my focus remains on the big picture, this life is anything but boring. The key, then, becomes remembering where God is calling me, regardless of what others think about this life I’m leading. If I’m striving to find purpose in joy in the tasks and adventures that lay before me, then this life isn’t boring, it is sanctifying. And if sanctity is boring, I want to be the most boring of all.

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” – Helen Keller

 

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