Today Gabe is wearing a yellow t-shirt, blue shorts, and brown flip flops.
It’s been 6 days, 1 hour, and 15 minutes since the last time I washed my hair. And by washed, I mean the last time I scrubbed baking soda into my scalp and then conditioned the ends of my hair with apple cider vinegar.
And you guys, things are exactly how you’d expect them to be.
On Tuesday, I had to admit that my hair smelled weird. On Wednesday, I bought some essential oils (lavender and grapefruit, in case you were wondering) to make my hair and general environment smell better. On Thursday, I had that terrifying thought that people sometimes have when they are on drugs, which is, “Is it going to be this way forever?”.
I didn’t wash my hair for a week because the internet told me to.
Apparently, when you quit shampoo, you’re supposed to wash with baking soda and vinegar a few times, and then go cold turkey for a week. No shampoo, no baking soda, no nothing. Nothing but hot water, a new commitment to high-and-tight ponytails, and, ideally, a work-at-home environment where you can live your normal life without coworkers noticing your new weird appearance and odor, which they might feel compelled to ask you about every day.
“You look…different. Wait, no, that’s not really what I mean. What I mean is: you look worse.”
Since the last time I “washed” my hair I’ve also gone on two runs, done two very sweaty yoga classes, and realized the power of just letting it go and giving in completely to your weird new project.
My yoga teacher gives everyone a little head massage during savasana at the end of class, and this week I’ve been trying to send her empathetic, “I know this is difficult” mind messages during my head massages.
Because just giving me a head massage after a yoga class is already a testament to your commitment as a yoga teacher. For those keeping track, I am still, all these months later, still getting ridiculously, unbelievably sweaty in every yoga class I do. To be fair, I like classes that really challenge me, but even so — my sweat game is basically off the charts. No one in my class can match me. It is the one thing I have over all of them.
(I have to count this as a victory, since in the new class I joined, I am the worst person there. This is just a statement of fact. I am getting over it. Slowly.)
So with the sweat situation I am working with by the end of every class, it is already a real commitment to her craft that my yoga teacher deigns to rub my temples with her fingernails and give me a cute little tap on my third eye every time.
But now with the sweat and a new hair texture that could only be described as…hmm..eerie? — well, let’s just say I am now also the worst person in my class in the “heads I have to touch” category for my teacher as well.
But see, this is what yoga — and also giving up shampoo — is all about. Getting into your body (or your hair) and letting go. Letting go of hangups. Letting go of insecurities and self-doubt. Letting go of conventional notions about what clean hair looks like.
Embracing this weird thing you’re doing. Completely. And spraying your hair with lavender essential oil spray, because seriously, we are trying to live in a society here and there is a line.