I've been thinking about Sarah's haircut a lot. The whole time I was hacking away at it, increasingly desperate about getting it right as she wiggled and squirmed on the chair, I couldn't help but think about all those times my mother took the shears to my head. She had a pair of those scary long-handled barber's scissors -- do you know the ones I mean? The long, thin silver blades looked like an egret or heron's bill. I used to dream about those scissors -- I dreamt about them again this weekend before cutting Sarah's hair.
How many times did my mom cut my hair? I can't possibly guess. A dozen? Two dozen? More? I DISTINCTLY remember the last time, though. I was 13 and had hair down to my waist. It had been years -- two? three? -- since my last trim and apparently Mom had had enough. "Just a trim! Just enough to take the dead ends off!" she begged. I gave in.
I sat in the bathroom on the cold closed lid of the toilet, as was usual, with a terrycloth bath towel around my shoulders and my damp hair slicked down my back. Skrritch! Skrritch! And then (I'm pretty sure this isn't just embellished memory), "Oops."
By the time she finished, my hair was over a foot shorter. Apparently there was a LOT of fixing going on back there, Mom.
As I took my turn wielding the scissors Saturday, my only hope was not to get myself into a situation I had to, you know, FIX. Skrrritch! Skrrritch! Who knew cutting hair could be so emotionally exhausting?
Sorry about all the wiggling, Mom. I had no idea.