My red hair has taught me a lot–and that I love having red hair.
Before I was born, my parents were contemplating two names for me. Mary Kathryn or Ferriss. When I came out with red hair–well, a couple of things happened: 1) the doctor told my mom she and my dad had a “beautiful redheaded baby girl,” and my mom, still feeling the after-math of the epidural said, “that’s not mine!” (We laugh about it today, it’s fine. My mom is blonde and my dad has brown hair–can you blame them for being surprised!?) And 2) they knew immediately I was going to be Ferriss.
Ferriss couldn’t suit me better. It’s different, unique, intriguing and there’s a story behind it–and I think everything has a story behind it.
The extra ‘s’ is very important. The double ‘r’ and double ‘s’ are a part of my identity and story. When people say “Ohhhh, like Ferris wheel?” I tell them… no, not exactly. Ferriss is a family name. Ferriss was my grandmother’s maiden name and her brother, my great uncle, Dave “Boo” Ferriss, is a legend–both as a person and athlete, particularly in the world of baseball. He is in the Mississippi State Hall of Fame and is a Boston Red Sox Hall of Famer (you can watch him talk about the 1946 World Series he pitched in in this ESPN video). My grandmother was nothing short of an athlete herself–she is in the Tennessee Tennis Hall of Fame. (I come from some pretty powerful genes.)
I share this on National #LoveYourRedHairDay because my name and my hair are simply who I am–they go hand in hand. They represent the strength, passion, zest, individuality and experiences that make up who I am. My sister would say I’m dramatic but I’ve come to understand myself as having more of an extreme personality–I have complex thoughts, an intense desire to be understood and go above and beyond in anything I do, I know so little yet see this big world in extravagant ways with visions too big for my own good. I actually believe I can change the world and I think it’s because of the two things that have shaped me, which were given to me by my family: my red hair and my name. I’m just ferriss, y’all.
While I soak up this day, How To Be A Redhead–the founders of National Love Your Red Hair Day–embrace this day for all of the unique and individual qualities and characteristics that we all have as humans. My red hair has taught me SO much about embracing myself and others. I’ve learned that confidence is strength; it has helped me discover that when we empower others through acceptance, kindness and with love, we gain experience in strength and understanding in return.
I put forth my energy on #LoveYourRedHairDay to everyone else! You are all QUEEN! What’s your favorite quality that makes you, you!? Share it below and celebrate it today and every day!
S/O to a fellow and AMAZING redhead, Sarajane Case for capturing these photos.