flower2Today I attended a holiday boutique with my lovely, talented, oldest daughter, who was showing her hand-made aprons. The show was in a a hair salon. It is more modern I suppose, than when my mother had been their client many years ago, but essentially the same. I recognized it right away.
My mother had thick, unmanageable hair. Today there are many products that could have made her life easier, but back then she resorted to keeping it cut short and styled simply, so that she had to struggle with it less.
I don’t know how long she had been going to that salon, but it seems that the stylists had started calling her Brillo hair.  Brillo is a product made of thin wire and soap, used for cleaning pots and pans. How terribly sad. How cruel we can be to one another.
At this point in my life I can’t imagine how she didn’t just get up out of the chair and scream at them all. In today’s world, she could have at least left them a nasty review on line. But that wasn’t her. She just took it. She went back more than once, because the stylist did a good job on her hair. Too bad it was at the cost of her self-esteem.
My mother wasn’t physically beaten that any of us knew of. But she was brow-beaten. She was told that she was stupid, incapable, and unattractive for many, many years. These are the actions of an abuser. This woman was being abused.
If only she had been better educated about the risks of remaining stuck in the quicksand of an abusive relationship.
If only she had learned to love herself.
If only she were still alive, I would tell her every day how much I love her.