Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow (or Soon After)

Zoe’s hair is finally starting to come in. She now has a downy little five o’clock shadow over her adorable noggin. My neighbors are almost all hispanic and birth babies with heads full of gorgeous thick locks. One neighbor peered at Zoe this past weekend in passing and asked me why I had cut off her hair. I said I hadn’t. Oh, it fell out? Uh, no, it’s just starting to come in.

I told my husband about this amusing exchange this evening as I watched Eli play in the tub. After Jeff walked out of the bathroom, Eli said, “You know, Mom, everyone has to get their hair cut sometime.” I agreed that that was true and asked if he had noticed today that a neighbor child had gotten her hair cut. He had.

“You know, Mom, youneed to get your hair cut sometime.” Eyes averted, fiddling with his bath toy.

“Do you think I should get my hair cut short?”

“Yes.”

“Daddy likes my hair long.”

“Oh.” Eyes still averted.

“Do you think I should get my hair in front cut short, but leave the back long?”

“Uh, yeah!” He finally looks at me, his eyes happy, hopeful.

Sigh… It’s not the first time he has asked me to get my hair cut in recent months. But this time I could tell that it is pretty important to him that I do so.

You see, I have wanted to have hair that was all long and that I could just braid back for many years, but each time I tried to grow out my bangs I could never get past the interminable awkward stage and would cut them again in frustration. Then I got pregnant again. And sick. So sick. For the first four months I did well just to get out of bed and wasn’t much seen by the public at large. That’s a great time to get a head start through a painfully awkward stage of hair growth. Pregnancy got a bit better, but with a couple of periods of bed rest and just being big and tired I still wasn’t seen much by the public at large, so I continued to let it grow.

And now, four months into my young daughter’s life, it is finally almost long enough to be caught back as I always wanted to do. I like having long hair, but I hate having to spend any time on it. I especially want to pull it out of the way of Zoe’s fingers or I may soon be almost as bald as she is.

But my son wants me to get it cut. I have to agree that I do think it looks better shorter. I’m just now a bit invested in the past year’s worth of growth, of finally getting beyond the stage where mirror experiences felt similar to those I had back in junior high, waiting for growth to bring things into proper proportions.

I told Jeff about my conversation with Eli. He said that perhaps Eli is prophetic, perhaps it is really the voice of God. So I guess I really do look better with bangs. In the eyes of my family at the very least.

The Experiment is over. The bangs shall return very shortly.

I never knew when I decided to have children that within 3 years my son’s opinion would be influencing my personal style.

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