Weddings and Body Hair (it grows back)

It has happened.

I’ve been asked to be in a friend’s wedding. I’ve read so many blog posts about this exact situation, and now here it is.

I was excited for my friend and excited to be asked, but literally the first thought in my head was “I bet she’ll want me to shave” and there it was, a sick-scared feeling in my stomach. And later when I was telling another friend about it, I cried. Sobbed, really. About my leg hair.

My crying baffled me at the time (it’s just HAIR. It grows back), but after some thought, it does make sense:

– I’ve thought about hair a whole lot over the past couple of years, and made it a really big deal.
– I think I’ve been using my body hair as a sort of shield against insecurity: “look how much I don’t care about your beauty norms!”
– Related: I think I’ve sprouted a whole new set of insecurities about not looking insecure. Somehow I’m afraid with hairless legs and pits, people will look at me and think “oh, too bad she doesn’t just love her body the way it is.” Which is ridiculous, but gives me some insight as to how my subconscious is apparently percieving people who shave.
– I think I also was upset because I felt the very familiar feeling of being trapped into doing something I don’t want to do, just because “this is the way we do it.”

But heavens, it is just hair. It grows back. And whatever I do with my body hair, and for whatever reasons, and whether those reasons are selfish or feminist or patriarchal or just I-want-my-friend-to-feel-great-about-her-wedding, it’s still just hair. It grows back.

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