Lisa’s work has appeared in the Huffington Post, COMO Living Magazine, and The Columbia Tribune. She is the recipient of the 2020 Betty Gabehart Prize for nonfiction from the Kentucky Women Writers Conference.
There was a little girl who had a little curl right in the middle of her forehead. And when she was good, she was very, very good, but when she was bad, she was horrid.*
The saga of my hair mirrors the story of my life. I was born with thick, coarse, curly hair and I hated it. As a teen in the 70’s, when everyone else flipped their silky, smooth tresses over their shoulder like a Breck girl, I fought mine. Chemically straightening, blow drying, even sleeping in a bandana to smash down the volume were ineffectual efforts to tame my hair into something it could never be. Only when I called a truce and let my mane grow wild did its true nature with its own definition of beauty emerge, inviting me to embrace it exactly as was. That turned out to be very, very good, (and I have to be honest, very, very big).
The story of my life began with my earnest pursuit of being the perfect young woman, wife and mother others expected me to be. It turns out my persona couldn’t be molded by oppression; my spirit refused to be smashed or tamed or denied, and when I followed where my heart led, I found an existence more beautiful than I could ever have imagined, an expression of my authentic self; wild, unbounded and free. In my nearly six decades on the planet, I’ve birthed four amazing children, pursued three rewarding careers, lived two distinct lives and procured one true love. This is the stuff of which my writing is made. Good, bad or horrid. Thanks for reading.