Reframing the Messy Bun

The beginning of this post is not for the faint of stomach. Just so ya know.

This week, I have been covered in baby snot. And poop. And spit up. Oh, and I’ve been peed on. It’s been one of those weeks. Baby C has a cold, so she’s a fountain of mucus. We’ve been doing a lot of laundry around here. Look how pitiful and cuddly she is.

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I started out the week wearing cute outfits, doing my hair, and putting on makeup. That has changed as the week has progressed. Today (Friday), I felt accomplished that I brushed my teeth. I slept for maybe 5 hours and am feeling the exhaustion that comes with taking care of a sick baby. I threw my hair in a messy bun, pulled on a flannel shirt and some snot-covered jeans, and went forth to conquer the day.

The messy bun is actually a set of twins. There’s Twin #1: the Cute Messy Bun that takes approximately 22.75 minutes of teasing, twisting, and pinning to create a look that says, “I just naturally look cute when I throw my hair on the top of my head and run out the door.”

Lies. Every woman knows that  the Cute Messy Bun is a fraud. It’s cute. But it ain’t quick.

Messy Bun Twin #2 is the Truly Messy Bun. It’s what occurs when you have a dog begging to go outside, your cat is biting your foot because you forgot to feed her breakfast at precisely 6am, and your baby is taking every single clean, folded article of clothing out of the laundry basket. You grab a ponytail holder, manhandle your unbrushed, dry-shampooed hair into a ball on the top of your head that looks like an inviting home for a flock of seagulls, and you go take care of business.

The Truly Messy Bun gets a bad rap. “Oh, I look awful today. I only had time to throw my hair up.” But I would like to pose a challenge. What if we reframe how we look at this messy bun?

Ever since we started dating, my husband has called my messy bun my “Power Bun.” I’ve learned to embrace this term. When I only have time to put my hair in a bun, it’s because I need to spend my precious time getting things done. I’m taking care of business, and I don’t need my hair to get in my way. It’s much more of a Rosie the Riveter, “We can do it” kind of feel, isn’t it?

To be clear, I love to get dolled up, and yes, I sometimes spend 30 minutes creating a perfectly coiffed Cute Messy Bun. It’s usually paired with some classic red lipstick and black eyeliner (my fave go-to going-out look). I love the Cute Messy Bun. I love when I can feel girly and pretty and go have fun. And I’m also learning to love the Messy Power Bun. I’m learning to enjoy that I can focus on taking care of my family, my friends, my life. Instead of telling myself that I look awful, I’ve begun telling myself how proud I am that I’m working hard to create a great life for my family and for myself.

You’re awesome. Go rock that Power Bun, girl.

Posted by

I'm a Jesus follower, wife, and mom. I have been caught in a Costa Rican riot, once accidentally insulted Gavin DeGraw, and really want to visit Lichtenstein. I love long, romantic walks through the rain forest. I make cakes sometimes. I'm a mess, and I'm learning to embrace that.

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