NEXT078 “And Here’s To You Mrs. Robinson”

Posted on : 04-10-2011 | By : Lynn | In : Mind Fodder

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The song that played in my head today as I walked out of  the broadcast programming class into a sea of students was “Mrs. Robinson“.  Some of us who were over zealous with bravado volunteered ourselves last week to sign up to create a “Pitch” for a show that would fit into the time slot of another show that had been yanked  (Big Brother—because our class voted it off).  I’ve been toying around with the idea of writing a pitch for a show revolving around an older (really older!) returning student etc. etc.

Of course you know that song by Simon & Garfunkel came from the movie, “The Graduate” but did you also know that Ann Bancroft, who played Mrs. Robinson, was only 36 to Dustin Hoffman’s 30?!  Okay, so it’s really funny to me that I’m older than Ann was then!  And yet, here I am in a time of my life when I feel more confident than I’ve ever felt before. I made the decision this year to let my hair grow as long as it wants to grow.    For years many people knew me for my hair or “my mane” as they would call it.

In my early twenties, my locks conspired with the Texas humidity to kidnap me and take control of my life (I didn’t go to a stylist and certainly didn’t know about “products”) which made me very self-conscious.  One of my co-workers at the time used to describe me walking down the hallway at work as “there goes Lynn and her hair” as if my hair was its own separate entity.  I was convinced that if I cut my hair to my shoulders, let’s say, that it would have surely kinked up so that I looked like a giant human Q-tip walking down the street.   So I bore the burden of unruly hair.  When it was “good” hair, it was very good hair but when it was bad….


Then when I hit my forties, the voices of the shoulds got ever so loud in my head.  When you’re 40 something “you should” cut your hair into an appropriate style, “you should” not be overtly sensuous, “you should” be sophisticated or glamorous or at least professional and for heaven’s sakes “you should” be contained.  So, I cut my hair to above my shoulders. But I felt like Samson loosing his mane.  It was like my hair was my own very special “pet” that helped define my spirit and now that pet had been stuck inside of a kennel never to see the light of day again.

Well, if the 40’s is the decade of listening to the shoulds then my 50’s are turning out to be the decade of “why not?!”

I’m breaking all kinds of real and perceived “rules” such as returning to school to complete a degree I recklessly abandoned years ago…just because!   And I’m letting my hair grow out and, oh by the way, I curl it and let it fluff out.  It’s actually been complimented by a couple of students, and of course, my friends–which is nice but I don’t have to have anyone’s approval today to be who I want to be.

So there I was wearing a great outfit today that my mom-in-law bought me at a fine Israeli boutique with all my hair hanging down my back and instead of feeling like an invading grandmother in class, I felt a little bit like Mrs. Robinson only better because I know how to put that secret smile on my own face today.

How about you?  Where are you standing up and out by just being “you”?