Author: Jill Davis
When Jill submitted her moving and empowering story to us, we just had to share it with you. From her 'rebellious', yet sentimental acts, to her decision to go grey hair, we hope you enjoy reading about her journey to celebrating her authentic self as much as we did.
On turning 60 I did three things.
I got a tiny lemon tattoo on my right wrist (lemons remind me of Majorca, where I try to spend as much time as possible, and of my mother, who loved a stiff gin and tonic, with ice and a slice).
I returned to Australia after a long gap, and sold my sensible Nissan Micra for a second hand Mini Cooper.
I also started to reflect about how I looked. I’m lucky to still be a size 12, so not unhappy with my body. A couple of bouts of skin cancer over recent years made me more conscious of what I was doing to my skin.
And I began to worry about my scalp every time I went to the hairdresser to cover up the increasingly greying roots, sitting and itching as the colour developed.
I had absolutely no sense of what my natural hair colour might be after years of dying, but knew that I was faced with many more years of tedious and expensive colouring sessions, and would be a slave to the process.
Googling ‘how to go grey’, I was amazed to find an active and vibrant community of women, admittedly heavily USA based, who were ‘transitioning’ to their natural colour, and shouting about it. I studied many before and after photos, and the conviction that I could do it myself, grew stronger.
Fortunately, at work there was a colleague who had also decided to embrace her grey with panache, and a friend at choir, so they were my inspiration.
My partner was as curious as I was to see what would happen.
Crucially, he was supportive.
So, the process began in December 2015. My hairdresser, not surprisingly, was not in the yes camp.
The grey hair that started to come through was shiny and healthy. I had some low lights put in to help blend, but then left it to do its own thing with regular cuts.
Some of my friends were horrified that I was becoming a ‘silver vixen’. My best friend, over from Australia in May this year, who I thought would be my sternest critic, liked it. My partner loves it.
I feel I look how I am supposed to at 62. I'm more authentic, with hair that is now an intriguing mix of silver, brown, salt and pepper. I have received compliments at work about the colour.
I care about how I look, love to dress well and wear makeup. Transitioning has been a positive experience so far. I just wish more women would have the confidence and support to join me on this journey of rediscovery.
About the Author: Jill lives in Harrow Weald, Middlesex with her partner John, and works as a Fundraising PR Manager for one of the UK's leading charities. She sings soprano with Tonic, a community choir based in Hatch End, and enjoys keeping flexible and relaxed with a weekly yoga class and walking in the local woods. Jill loves to read, and enjoys all the arts, including opera. And she hopes to be getting another cat soon!
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