stories WOMEN'S WORK


Since I was a girl, one of the conversations that floated round my growing years, was the subject of my hair. Now if you look at the photo that is connected to this short blurb you may not be surprised by the conversation. The big question? What ever shall we do with Michelle’s hair? Now this is truly a delightful adventure of my mother perming my hair, cutting my bangs with her pinking sheers. Which I never really understood why Pat owned as she did not sew.

Did she buy them as an attempt to tame my feathers? I can still smell the acrid sulphur aroma as the perm solution ran into my eyes and down my spine. Shivers like cold burning rain promising wonderful curls, that my mama Pat could style and her little girl would be coifed and managed with a tight rag roll set. But no, and I possibly think to her secret delight, my hair would not all curl. Well some did. Into perfect spiral worms of dark strawberry gold. But some would stand our straight in random chaos from the tangled hair party. And her wild barefoot daughter would again look like as she would say like “nobody owned.” Now this hair conversation has followed me my entire life. Long blonde hair, that I spent hours streaking, with the addition of the 80’s bangs, to the paint dipped pigtails that were my everyday staple on any mural anywhere.

But always within an hour of doing my hair would become its own chaotic adventure. I once read an article that said our personality is like our hair. I would think about how some women’s hair would lay so thick and perfectly in order. Somehow moving like a solid silky connected piece of fabric. Or the curly hair that would bounce back in place with a song like abandon. And mine well feathers…always chaotic feathers.

Rural Women is a blog that I am starting to share with other rural women. Or Real Women. We are more than our hair secrets and makeup tutorials. We are wild women. We grow wild and with that wilderness comes wisdom. I hope to invite women to write letters to this site. Submit stories of wandering wildness that lives in all women. And lets connect and sit for a bit and have some conversations about why we really love our hair wild.

By MASTER ARTIST Michelle Loughery

Visionary, influence, social change maker but most at heart ARTIST- MURALIST AND STORY PAINTER

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