Monday, May 12, 2014

In Pictures...

If you have read my last few posts, you know that I have been thinking a lot about what my life was like back when I started this blogging experience and where it is now.

Some of the biggest changes between 2010 and now...
  •  I can't believe how far I have come in terms of my health.
  • I write this blog AND I am working on a novel.
  • My father passed away.
  • I moved - again.
  • I really didn't want my friends and ESPECIALLY not my ex-husband to read this blog. Okay, that hasn't changed so much... but now I know that the chances of it happening are slim to none. Back in 2010 I guarded this blog like it was gold.
  • In fact, I didn't put a REAL picture of me on here for the LONGEST time because I wanted to be anonymous.
  • Now, I am Facebook friends with many of you. Though I still don't want you to mention my blog here... there.
  • I've started taking dance lessons.
  • And I hate my hair... now. I look at pics of myself in 2010 and my hair was pretty darn awesome. Everything else was terrible, but my hair was great. Ha!
I think it was Tara Tyler who said something recently on her blog about how people want to see the REAL you. Of course, from her perspective, she was speaking as an author who has published books out there. It is important for a writer to have a face (unless you are Alex...:) And that made me ponder this blog. Yeah, I hope to be a published writer (someday), but that day isn't today. So... how important is it for people to SEE me?

More important, how much do I want/not want to be seen? I didn't post a picture of myself in my sidebar four years ago because I really didn't want my ex-husband to find this blog. I felt like he stifled my voice... even though I rarely wrote about him. In the cases when he did get a mention it was almost always in correlation to a discovery that I made about myself because of him and that relationship. But... not always. Sometimes, I just needed a free place to vent. After four years of not being able to get my friends and family to read this blog (even with much pleading), I realize that my ex is NOT going to just stumble into this blog. Not Gonna Happen.

That said... I am still not sure I want to put a picture of Me in my sidebar. Maybe someday.

For today, I will clear up some misconceptions. Back on my birthday (end of March) I thought I was being clever using the strike through feature when I "discussed" my age. I thought I was clear on the fact that I am NOT 29 years old. For the record, turning 30 triggered a crisis of sorts. I spent way too much time when I was 29 telling anyone who would listen that I was "still in my 20s." I just wanted to say it as often as possible while it was still true. My aunt declared she was 29 until the day she died. She encouraged me to do the same. Honestly, that sort of thing is funny when you're in your 60s and older... but not so much before that. So, LC, this picture is for you. This is me when I was actually 29:

A professional photographer friend of mine took this picture. I really like it. Ah... the good old days. I even had nice hair here. This was when I could still color my hair. Now, I can't do that because I am allergic to the hair color junk.

And this is a picture from 2010 when I really liked my hair:

I let my hair grow several more inches and then cut it off and donated it to Locks of Love. One of my friends from high school had a son with a brain tumor.  He went through several rounds of chemo and radiation and they thought it was beaten and then it came back with a vengeance and he died within a month of being re-diagnosed. I don't regret donating the hair, even though it didn't go to him, but it still makes me very sad that my friend's son died. I am also at my sickest in this picture. I weighed in the neighborhood of 100 pounds here. If it were a healthy 100 it would be different, but it was NOT.

Now, I hate my hair. About six months ago, I went to a totally new hair salon and I let someone cut it when my intuition was screaming, "Don't do it. You will regret it." And I didn't listen. And I regret it. It is just horrible. I hope that in another 3-6 months I can have someone I know will do a great job cut it and THEN I will post a current picture. It also gives me a few months to get fit with the dancing I mentioned above.

I know that this seems like a fluff piece. And maybe it is. I have revealed so much of myself on here (some of you people know me better than Anyone) that maybe it is just silly to not put up a picture in my sidebar. Some of you have pics of yourself on your profile and some of you don't. Do you struggle with the aspects of you that you want to show here?


  1. Don't worry, your hair will grow!
    Very sorry about your friend's son.
    I do have a picture, just a side view. But I like it that few would recognize me on the street. I'd promised my wife my writing would never invade on our personal life, which is the main reason I keep many things private. So far, so good...

  2. I think it's great you decided to post pictures of yourself. It speaks of great achievements in personal level. Insecurities and fears defeated. Hair will grow and also your confidence. You are taking long steps forward in many levels and I'm proud of you.
    The good thing about being a dragon is that you can eat the photographer or the one who cut your hair if they do a lousy job. Tassin knows it so he does his best. I have no complaints. ;)

  3. We don't mind being known on the Internet, because what you see is what you get and even if our writing can be crude we aren't ashamed of it. We're here to make a statement, and we want people to know who we are. Plus, we're going to have our YouTube show soon so people are going to know us in 1080p. How's THAT for scary?

    It's great to finally put a face to the blogger, and cheers to having the confidence to put up some pictures. I think the biggest hurdle for most people is realizing that just because you upload a picture of yourself to your blog, it doesn't mean that people are going to start stalking you or that random people from your daily life are going to magically stumble upon it and then come up to you and say, "I saw you on a blog. YOU. What are you DOING there?"

    1. Not very scary. I think it's great. But you knew that already, knowing your bluest stalker and all..

  4. Yep, I agree with many of your statements, Robin, except I never had good hair, but I did have easycare hair for a while. When I first started blogging, my ex was harassing me, so even though at the beginning I had a photo up, I took it down, changed my blogname, etc, and he still found me, as blogger conn' d my old blog to the new one at that time. . .

    Like you said, one day maybe I'll feel comfortable with a photo, when I have a book will probably be the time. I'm working on the novel part, but til then, I think I'll think about it. . .I def understand. I do like the attitude of the Beer for the Shower, but I'm not there yet.

  5. Is this a fluff piece or a hair piece?

    I gotta tell you Robin, I don't give hair sympathy to nobody (mine left me long ago)!

    For you, hair will grow back...for me, every three weeks or so I have Great Clips scalp me with a 1/2 attachment.

    I am at least smart enough never to guess a woman's age aloud at anything older than 29 (Missus Cavanaugh did not raise any dumb kids).

    When I turned fifty, everyone told me 50 was the new 40. I told them forty was no picnic, either.

    In America we seem to fear age, but it's silly to fear what is going to happen anyway. So it should be about being happy where you are, which it sounds like you are.

    And that's a good thing!


  6. Robin, you are beautiful. Thirty was liberating for me. Pre-thirty me was all angst and self-criticism. I was looking over pictures of myself and wondered why I hate where I was. I was fine, but I couldn't see it. That inner critic needs to be kicked in the pants.

    i was scared to death people would laugh at me also...who am I to be blogging? But I'm happy here and I'll live my life to please me, not the world. And the nay sayers and meanies are way fewer than we think, they are just loud. Ignore them. Haters are just coming from an ugly place in their own soul. It's not their fault they can't be internally beautiful like the rest of us.

  7. Alex ~ Yes, hair will grow. I am not "worried" about it. Being in any sort of transitional place is always uncomfortable. That is true of hair and everything else.

    Al ~ I have posted pics before. In fact, I posted some from my Vegas trip a year ago. I think it was a year ago. Anyway... when you post a pic in a blog post it gets buried under all the newer posts. So, I am not sure that this is really all that brave. But thanks!

    ABFTS ~ Yeah, the realization has dawned that the chances of anyone I know ACCIDENTALLY finding this blog... pretty much slim to none.

    D.G. ~ Aha. Well, if my ex knew that I was blogging on blogger he might have tried to find it. But he didn't know and I never had an issue. It's funny but we are in such a different place now than we were then that I am not sure he would care now. And I haven't written anything about him in the LONGEST time. It is just nice to know that I can write about anything here and not feel stifled. I am sorry that you went through it with your ex.

    LC ~ Yes, we are all a bit obsessed with age and hair and looks. Thank you (not) Photoshop for transporting celebrities to a level that even they can't achieve on their own... and presenting those images as "real."

    Elizabeth ~ I think that you turned a corner at thirty. Maybe you gained the perspective to see things as they really are. I no longer care about birthdays and don't melt down when I get older. The danger with becoming well-known as a writer - and maintaining a blog - is that there will always be someone wanting to throw water on you. BUT, as you say, the supportive folks outweigh the others by a country mile.

  8. Ah... you're talking about hair too. You're right, that is funny. What is also funny is that none of my friends or relatives care to read my blog. I guess knowing me in non-virtual life is all they can bear. That said, I like you irrespective of whether your hair is long or short. I know, it's shocking. Now, I posted a couple of pics of my non-blue outer shell, say, when I got married in September 2012, and I can't think of any reasons why that would be a problem. You look cool, you are cool. Period.

  9. I like the candidness of the professional shot. It's warm and real.

    I've been the only one to touch my hair for ten years now. No way anyone is hacking off my length.

  10. >>... I thought I was clear on the fact that I am NOT 29 years old. For the record, turning 30 triggered a crisis of sorts.

    No, you were NOT clear on that fact!
    Because I had the same thought that my friend DiscConnected had: She's just turned... 29?! ...Or, 30?!

    I was confused too. (I wonder if your "Strike-Through" attempt didn't work. I'd have to go back to see but, definitely, SOMETHING didn't come across right! I almost started feeling a guilty conscience for having been the dirty, old man who flirted with you. ...HA! I'm obviously kidding, but... some of your 'Followers' are going to think: Wow! Was that dirty old bastard really flirting with my Blog Buddy?!)

    About the hair... honestly, I don't know what to say. Guys are different. Most heterosexual guys think: Ahhh, it's a bad haircut, but it will grow out and nobody will know 6 weeks from now.

    And then there's me - a very rare breed of guy - who thinks: It's a bad haircut. So friggin' what? There are FAR MORE IMPORTANT things to be concerned about!

    Sorry, I'm not much help in this situation.

    [I had one particular girlfriend for five years - "The Countess" - and she used to cut my hair. One time she did something "wrong" - cut my hair too short in one little spot - which gave the impression that I had a bruise on one side of my head. I pointed it out to her, and she felt terrible until I started joking about it. I told her I was going to tell people that "The Countess hit me in the head and kicked my ass!" A couple friends really did axe me about it and I just told them the truth. To me, a bad haircut is nuttin' to even think about.]

    On more than one occasion, I have told barbers: "I'd rather get a bad haircut done quickly than a good haircut done slowly." On those occasions, the barbers have replied: "Well, I'll try to do a good haircut as quickly as I can."

    REAL GUYZ are just... DIFFERENT".

    I will tell you though that NONE of my birthdays bothered me in the least until I hit... 50. That one was a slightly bitter pill to swallow. From the time I was a very little boy, I had determined that the age of "50" officially meant that you were a "GRANDPA".

    The funny thing is that... when I hit 50, I still wasn't even a "HUSBAND" (and at 54, nothing has changed... but 54 is STILL a bitter pill to swallow!)

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    1. Okay, you and LC BOTH thought I turned 29. Oh my. Oh my. Oh my.

      First, I understand what you are saying about guys and hair vs. women and hair. We just don't see this the same way. For guys, you get a bad haircut and in a few weeks it is all good again. If you have long hair and someone botches it as badly as this salon person did... not good. I asked her to cut so that it was an inch below my shoulders. She cut it two inches above my shoulders. And the left side is longer than the right side. And the layers are completely screwy, which only becomes more obvious as it has grown out. But, I cut it now and it will just go back to as short as where I didn't want it six months ago. Bah.

      Now, on the age thing. I say that only a got a few good genes from my parents while my younger brother got all the good genetic material. BUT, the one thing I did get from my mother was youthfulness. Yes, she looks about ten years younger than she actually is and I do, too. Or darn near. In my twenties it drove me crazy being carded at "R" rated movies. I was like, "Seriously???"

      When my dad died, I really needed a haircut for the funeral. I don't think I'd had it cut since I donated my hair. So, my brother took me to a friend of his who cuts hair and she gave me an After Hours in her basement haircut. While in the chair, she asked me who was older (me or my brother) and I asked her what did she think? (I am older by four years.) She said she thought HE was older. Then I had her guess my age. She guessed me ten years younger than I was and my brother a year or two older than he was Every time she guessed I told her she was right while my brother pitched a tantrum. "She's lying. She's lying." I totally was, but I confessed after the guessing was said and done. Hahahaha.

      So, how old is she???? ::drum roll please:: The deeply held secret, never to be discussed again... I turned 46 last birthday. And that makes me 42 in the second picture. Ssshhhhh. Now don't tell.

  11. The good thing about hair is that it grows back. I don't know how old you are, but as far as I'm concerned, it doesn't matter, and it doesn't even matter what your hair looks like. I think you're a really cool person!

  12. Hi, Robin,

    Your natural color is gorgeous! Why would you even want to dye it? I'm happy to hear you are so much healthier physically and mentally. I think being personal on one's blog is great. WE all like to know about our blogger friends.

    Over the past four years I've posted about my health's ups and downs. And after my insane accident last summer being hit by a cyclist, I stopped coloring my hair after almost thirty years! No not from gray. LOL. As a model they preferred my hair much darker. My hair is naturally light ash brown. But with my light skin and blue eyes they did the elvis thing on me and dyed it blue/black.

    I got so used to the color I continued it. But since the accident cut a four by three inch puncture at my hairline and slightly higher, It had to be shaved. So I couldn't color my hair and wore a ball cap for almost six months until it healed and the hair grew back. So now I changed my blog pic and posted me know with long sandy/grey hair. IT actually feels great not to have to color anymore.

    Show us you when you're ready. You've already showed us your heart and that's the most important....

  13. I love what Michael wrote here, Robin. You have already showed us your heart. Just keep doing that. We love you.

  14. As I live a basically drama-free life and most of my relation haven't cared one way or the other, I'm sure I can't advise you. I will say that if you decide to put up a sidebar picture, that professional one is very easy on the eyes!

  15. Blue ~ Yeah, the pics in the sidebar are irrelevant.

    Diane ~ I really like this shot, too. I have another pic taken a few years after this one that I like very much.

    Sherry ~ This is one place where our age and appearance does not matter!

    Michael ~ I suppose you have a point about my natural color. I am here to tell you that blondes don't have more fun. Or I didn't. Ha! Although when I wore my hair this color several people told me I looked like Nicole Kidman. Too funny. Now NO ONE tells me that, so I think it was the hair. As for your pic... I like the one of you in the kitchen. Is that the one you are writing about? It feels very down to earth.

    Karen ~ You both are so sweet.

    CW ~ Yeah, but I was 29.... not me anymore.... but thanks:)

  16. I struggle a lot with this stuff, but have my picture all over the place (as you noticed). Today's post was so somber, it was difficult. Little by little I share pieces of my unhappy/dark self. That's always risky, when you're known for your humor. Everyone wants to laugh. I feel like, somehow, I'm disappointing people. But it's wonderful to see all nuances to a person's character. You, my friend, are a lovely lady - inside and out.


  17. Nice to put a face with the blog:) And what a wonderful gesture: donating your hair.

  18. I don't put up a lot of pictures of me because I'm not crazy about the way I look, although it's getting better -- I've lost about 25 pounds in the last 18 months or so.

    When I first started blogging I used a pseudonym ("The Trouble With Roy" from an old song I wrote once), but after a few years I stopped doing that because I didn't think it was such a big deal.

    Every now and then clients or lawyers or judges will Google me and see my blogs. A few comment on them, but I don't put anything on that I wouldn't want to discuss in real life, so I'm okay with that.

  19. As you know, I never post pictures of myself on my blog. Lots of other pictures, but not me. None of my irl friends, outside of other bloggers, know about my blog so there is little chance of being discovered. And yet I do still have a tiny bit of fear inside me as to especially certain family members finding the important outlet that is my blog. It's not wise to underestimate crazy and I actually love having that privacy.
    On the other hand, I do sometimes struggle a bit with thinking that maybe 'this once' I should post such and such photo that includes me. But the feeling leaves me without too much of an internal fight and I just value the privacy and freedom so much.

  20. I actually enjoy fluff pieces because it lets me into your head. :-D

    It isn't an easy choice to blog as yourself. Sometimes I still struggle with it, and it's been years.

  21. Thanks for sharing the pictures of yourself!

    I don't have a problem sharing pictures of myself, except I look older in every damn new picture.

    Except for the "ugly picture" part, I think I have learned to accept my age. I had a crisis over turning 40 (which was almost 10 years ago) until I went skiing with my family and a teaching friend who was in her 20s. During that trip, I out-skied the 20-something-year old. I out-drank her. I stayed up later than she did, and I got up earlier. I hauled around 2 small children and their ski equipment without batting an eye.

    She mostly lay around on the couch moaning about how tired and sore she was from her two times down the mountain.

    I got over being 40 pretty quickly!

  22. Robin, I'm so glad you are still writing and blogging (even though I don't comment). This post really struck home for me--it took me years to post a picture of myself for very similar reasons, you know, the ex and all. I am a very private person, and so it's very uncomfortable for me to put my 'real self' out there. And what does that really mean, anyway? Do people really want to know how neurotic I am?

  23. So many comments to make. I hope I remember them all. Okay -

    First: Thanks for the recommendation over at my blog. I ordered the book. Mostly for the CD since I'm trying to learn meditation. I have a problem keeping my mind quiet.

    Second: I thought that was you in your profile picture. I'm terrible with faces. But, I love the Christmas picture because although you say you were at your sickest, there is still a true happiness in your eyes that shines through. It shows true hope and determination in your eyes. That can't be extinguished.

    I love that you donated your hair. Such a beautiful thing to do. I'm sorry about your friend's son. That's terrible.

    As far as putting your picture on the sidebar, you know how I feel. I have some decisions to make sometime in the future. I write under an alias. I don't have my picture up anywhere unless you count my blurred wedding photo. And, I plan on publishing a book within a year. So, what do I do? Heck if I know but my gut will tell me when the time comes. Just like when you're ready, you'll do what's right for you. I like what you got going on now.

    1. I am thrilled that you ordered the book. Please let me know how it benefits you. I can't wait to hear about it.

      Well, I have plenty of hollow-eyed pics from that time. My hair just doesn't look as great. But, I get what you're saying:)

      Yes, I don't regret donating my hair. I learned during that process that most hair donated comes from children. Something like 80%.... We could all learn something from them.

      Yes you do. So long as publishing anything remains in my distant future I don't have to tackle this issue. When it hits me in the face, I will have to decide what to do. And it might mean creating an entirely new space just for my writing. Because even though my ex has no incentive to look for my blog now... what will happen when I publish a book? Maybe nothing. He is not a reader so the chances of him finding it...still slim. But what about people he knows? I guess what I am saying is that I know it is one thing to bare your soul on here when no one really knows you. Or for the people who have supported you all the way down this road. And it is a whole other thing for someone looking for an author blog to just run into all of your personal junk out there for viewing (and judging). You could always keep your pseudonym blog and open up another blog under you real name in which you post ONLY things that you wouldn't mind the whole world reading AFTER you become a best-selling author.

  24. Robyn ~ I like both sides of you. I really enjoy the humorous blog bits but I also like it when you write about things on your heart... or that are important to you. Never feel badly about sharing that side of you.

    Sandra ~ I thought I might donate again, but I keep cutting it! Aacchh.

    Briane ~ If you aren't putting things on here that you don't mind anyone reading... well, it's all good.

    Jasmine ~ There are all kinds of crazy. And I understand that niggling fear you have. Just remember that none of those people will find out unless you tell them. Or someone you trust with your blog tells them. That limits the number of people YOU tell. And if you've had the same sorts of issues as so many of the rest of us... none of your friends want to read your blog anyway! Ha!

    Misha ~ Yes, this is the sort of dust that settles when I don't have a "real" post demanding to be let out. Brain Fluff. :)

    Dianne ~ Ah, Dianne, we all look older. I have these creases (wrinkles) above my eyebrows that drive me bananas. Actually, the crease over my right eyebrow is worse than the other side and I know it is because I have the migraine on that side of my head. I had no idea I was scrunching my face in that way. It's horrible. And now these random white hairs are gracing my eyebrows. These are the first signs that I really am "looking" older. Heck, I have felt like crap for the last ten years because of a chronic migraine. I really shouldn't be surprised that my body is finally catching up. What I am going The Long Way Around to say is that if you still feel good and are active... the rest doesn't matter. And that is what you learned on that ski trip. There are all kinds of way to live any age. If you FEEL good... that is what counts.

    J.B. ~ I haven't seen you in FOREVER. I didn't realize you were still on blogger. I do know about the ex. Mine was all up in my business for way too long after we divorced. It makes it very hard to feel like there is anything that is yours. And that was why this space was like gold. As for knowing the real you... yeah, I think people like knowing that another neurotic soul is out there.

  25. I can see why that picture of you is your favorite. Ahhh.. womanhood. I aways think age 29 is just on the brink of blossoming. You do have lovely hair and there are many natural hair products on the market now, if one wants to enhance their hair color.

  26. Thank you for this further look into your life and who you are. I like to "know" the bloggers I read and I wish I could meet more of them in person. You look great in the photos, though in the second where you say you were the "sickest" you do look a bit weary, but you still look great.

    Like Larry, my hair is long gone so I've given up on what was once my prideful dark brown mane--I used love letting my freak flag fly but then it flew and now it's a mere spectral mockery of a head of hair.

    Never worried about my age--I guess that's mostly a woman issue. Mostly I worry that I often can't remember how old I am so I have to figure what year it is now to calculate my age. Dumb I guess, but maybe a preview of things to come regarding memory and age.

    I guess I can understand your reluctance to let friends and family read your blog. I got that out of the way when I first started blogging. They read for a while and then got bored and gravitated away from reading. Now I can say what I want and don't worry much about them seeing it.

    It would be interesting if my ex-wives blogged so I could see what they have to say. Actually my first wife says plenty on Facebook and she always has good things to say about me and is like good friends with my daughters from my second marriage. My second wife is the real enigma. Not just to me, but to our daughters. None of us can figure what happened to her head. It might be interesting to read her blog if she had one, but it would probably be annoying and over the top liberal and anti-God.

    Maybe everyone should have a blog so we could check people out to see where they're coming from....

    Anyway, this was a very cool post--the closest to getting to meet you without anyone having to travel. Hope you do these every once in a while. After all no other bloggers can write about you the way you do.

    Wrote By Rote
    An A to Z Co-host blog

  27. My husband has a co-worker whose teen daughter just passed from a brain tumor. *sigh* I'm sorry for her, and for your friend too. It's nice that you donated your hair. It's pretty in both pictures.

    I don't struggle w/pictures on the blog. I've got a handful of them, and one post littered with them because another blogger asked me to post about my history w/my hubby. ;) BUT, I'm the one always taking the pics, and no one ever tells me to get in, so I don't, lol. I keep thinking the poor kids are not going to have any pictures to remember me by when I die. ;)

  28. Robin: You are pure happiness. I love reading your blog.

    What can I say about your photos? I know what you look like.

    As for hair, it is probably not my strong suit.

    Finally, I don't post my picture either. I have a good reason, but only one person has ever asked me what it is.

  29. Manzi ~ Last time I was at the Health Food Store I noticed that they had hair color. I raised my eyebrow and thought, "Well... maybe."

    Arlee ~ Can you imagine if everyone wrote a blog? Some of them would be so OUT THERE you really couldn't stand it. It makes me know that I wouldn't want to read minds. Yikes.

    rosey ~ You need to teach the hubs how to work the camera.

    JJ ~ Pure happiness. Hahahahahaha. I have wondered why you never post pictures. I thought it might have something to do with the teaching thing. I guess I figured you had your reasons... now, I am curious.

  30. Your hair is an amazing color- I am having hair color envy now! I have never minded getting older and now that I am REALLY getting old I like to brag about it...most likely I am becoming an annoying old lady...ah well- it's fun! Cheers and aren't you a wonderful person donating your beautiful hair for cancer patients.

  31. How'd I miss this? I think your hair is lovely, and I love that you donated it. Every time I post on my blog, I ask myself...If anyone I know reads this, will I be embarrassed? So yea, I keep the internal editor on. As for pictures, well, my name is all over the place, so a picture (besides the one Ialready have posted) wouldn't hurt, I guess...but I don't have many of me I I don't bother.


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