ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Hair - The Story of a Mother and Daughter

Updated on March 20, 2013
Mom and Me
Mom and Me | Source

Sometimes it's more than hair

"Where'd you get that pretty red hair?"

Why did people have to ask that daft question - they asked it all the time!

My mother was quick to answer, "Oh, the Angles gave it to her!" and I'd smile sweetly on cue. What I really wanted to say was that, "It just grew there, stupid!" and then smile sweetly. But mom always beat me to the punch.

For my hair, she felt a strange sense of pride. Mom was Scottish and I was adopted. So she figured, with my red hair, no one would doubt I was really her child.

It was the early '60s and we lived in a small town. It seemed important to her that people not know I was adopted.

The irony was, everyone in this small town knew. Many had known her since she was the prom queen in high school. Many of the men had surely put their names on her dance cards and their hands on her...well never mind. The point is, EVERYONE knew I had not sprung forth from her womb! But illusion seemed to be her cape of protection in life.

It wasn't that my mother was a liar. Well, she did lie - to me and to others. Often. But her lying was more from a sense that she couldn't be good enough for the world, just the way she was.

As a young adult entering the working world, her advice to me was, "Oh just tell them you can do it, then learn it afterwards." It was meant as help and to show me how much she believed in me. But that approach could never work - it was too stressful for me.

When I was a younger child, she had the need to cloak herself in the heavy cape of Valium to hide from the stress of a job that was too much for her. That had been a nasty disguise and she was so scary emerging from it when it had nearly consumed her.

I hated my red hair. That is until I decided being different was rebellious! When I came home with the "Annie Lennox" hair cut - short and spiky - my mother was alarmed.

"But dear, people won't know if you're a boy or a girl!" HA, that alone was worth the hair cut. It also made me laugh good and long.

"Mom, if they can't tell, I think they have more problems than me!" She never had a good come-back for that. HA again, I had won!

But right now. I stood in a cold room, somewhere deep in the bowels of the hospital. This woman's hair - it was so soft as I ran my fingers sadly through it. Still mostly brown at 72, she had frosted it regularly - there was little gray.

I pat her head tenderly, as I did with both of my babies when were born. I stared at her stunning cheek bones, handed down to her from a beautiful 19th century Native American consort. That blood had been the curse of her family for five generations.

But I smiled knowing it was also responsible for her last illusion. The one where the doctor yelled at the nurse, "This can't be HER chart. She's not 72! She's in her 50s."

I hoped that that had been the last sparkle in my mother's blue eyes and the last laugh on her lips before she slipped to the other side.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • susan54 profile image


      7 years ago

      Mbwalz,I am sure your mother loved you so much, as did you father. I think as kids we alway get along with one parent or the other not both, at least at the same time. Very good hub, you are so talented as a writer.

      You can wear your red hair like mine,that would be so cool!

    • mbwalz profile imageAUTHOR

      MaryBeth Walz 

      8 years ago from Maine

      Thanks Money Glitch! It's very difficult to lose a parent. I wasn't sure if it would be easier to lose my mother (1999)- with whom I had so much conflict or my father (2009) with whom I had a wonderful relationship. I would say they were both heart wrenching in their own way.

      It's wonderful that you are now rediscovering such wonderfully annoying things about your mom. It's that love that keeps them with us forever!

    • Money Glitch profile image

      Money Glitch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      Wow, This prose revealed a lot about your life's story. I think this exemplifies the ole saying, "that it is not about hair, weight, or whatever else that ails you; it goes deeper than that."

      I'm sorry that you loss your mom. I loss mine in '05 and I am still discovering little things that use to get on my nerve that now makes me smile and adore her. :) Thanks for sharing!


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)