Monday, April 1, 2013
The Beauty in AGING
My mother used to wash Grandma's hair with that water-less shampoo you can buy for people who can't necessarily take regular baths or showers. She'd suds her up, and then brush her locks, the long strands of silver shining brightly in the lamplight. Like fine silk, it flowed through the brush under my mom's strokes, soft and brilliant.
I loved her hair. One of my favorite things while visiting was to give Grandma a kiss on the cheek and touch the back of her head, feeling her thin, soft hair between my fingers, the silver often catching the light playing off her bobby pins. Grandma was always concerned about her hair; even in moments cloaked in the darkness of her dementia, she'd smooth her hair with her wrinkled hand or ask for a comb. Grandma loved her bobby pins and when my mom would put them in Grandma's hair, she took special care to place them just so.
I'm glad that even before Alzheimer's took over all reason and sense, Grandma was not one to dye her hair. It was that beautiful silver gray in all of my memories of her and I never once considered her "old" because of it. At times, her hair served as a reminder that no matter how wrinkled and yellowed she looked, or even how disoriented and mean she acted, she was still my Grandma, still beautiful, still there.