It all started when I entered Kindergarten at the age of 5. Up until that time, I was totally oblivious to the feelings of jealousy and envy. However, after my first day there, envy became a bitter companion.
As I was happily playing with the cool kitchen set, a little blond haired girl came up to me and asked,
“Why is your hair orange?”
It was in that moment I took inventory of my fellow classmates and noticed no one else had red locks like mine.
“Is there something wrong with your hair?” the little girl continued. “You look funny.”
That is the moment I truly knew what envy was. All I wanted was to make new friends and enjoy this new experience they called school. However, I was suddenly branded “Different” and I did NOT like it one bit.
Why did my hair have to be red? Why could it not be blond and bouncy like the nuisance standing before me? Was there some kind of problem with me?
As I grew older my distain for my hair grew with me. My bitterness and envy was easily fueled by the fact my sister had the most gorgeous blond hair imaginable.
It was blond and bouncy, just like her. Everyone adored her delicious golden locks. Whenever she was describing me, she always referred to me as her big sister, “the one with the orange hair.” Wherever we went, everyone commented on just how different we looked.
All through school, I was the only redhead in my class. I stood out wherever I was. Any compliments I received were never taken seriously, but as painful reminders that I was different.
It wasn’t until I was in my early 30’s that I truly appreciated my ginger locks. When I would go to the hair dressers I would see women paying BIG dollars to try and have their hair match mine.
Suddenly, the one being envied was ME.
God made each of us special. Some He made short. Some tall. Some slender. Some more bulky. Some physically gifted. Some artistically gifted. Some Blond. And yes… some Ginger.
No matter the difference…. we are all perfectly beautiful. It took me a while to get there, but I know now my red hair was not given to me as a curse, but in reality it was a gift.
When I look in the mirror now days, I don’t see just a red headed little girl. I see someone created by a loving God, who decided that the world needed a little extra color and spunk in it.