There have been more times then you'd guess that I've been made to feel that I'm "just" a hairstylist. As if it's some kind of a half profession. As if I spend the majority of my day gossiping, flipping through magazines & eating bon bons. Or that someone who practices a "trade" is most likely not as intelligent or talented as someone with a more advanced degree. Not to mention you can't possibly make a great living practicing such a trade.
I'm not going to lie - I have a blast for the most part - probably much more fun then your average profession - but for the record I still work really hard. It's not only physically exhausting at times - but for the most part it's even more emotionally exhausting to be "on" all day long. But it's 100% worth it.
I guess that's why when I was introduced to this John Steinbeck passage it really struck a cord with me,
The best part of my job is the connections I feel with clients. It can be extremely rewarding - for both of us. I've helped people find the right wigs during chemotherapy & the right hairpiece when they were going through hereditary hair loss. I listen to clients who are going through all sorts of rough patches & help celebrate & congratulate them when something amazing happens. I often know when they're pregnant way before many of their family & friends & I'm trusted with all sorts of personal information, insecurities, struggles & health issues.
I'm soooo glad I was introduced to this quote - whenever I feel like I'm "just" a stylist I'll remind myself of Steinbeck's words & remember how lucky I am to be in such a kick ass profession.
Cheers - Hal