The First Haircut: A Lesson in Letting Go
Snipping away those first fine locks of baby hair is a tough decision, but somebody has to do it.
I had been putting it off for a while, but finally decided last week it was time for Jack to have his first haircut. It was not a decision I took lightly because a part of me does want to hold on to his babyhood as long as possible, which includes keeping those sweet curled golden locks on his sweet baby head. But, he was starting to rock a Bieber ‘do and that, I just couldn’t handle.
In an attempt to make this milestone as easy as possible, I wanted to take him to one of those fun places where they specialize in cuts for kids. On my way to the Snip-Its in the Village Shoppes, I made the mistake of calling my mom to see if she wanted to come along.
She did, but not without expressing her opinion on whether or not the haircut was even necessary.
“Your father and I decided Jack really doesn’t need a haircut and we REALLY wish you wouldn’t take him," she said. "He’s just a baby and they are going to cut off all his blonde curls! They will use those horrible clippers and make him look like a little boy and I want him to look like a baby still…. But I guess there is nothing I can say to stop you because he’s not my baby,” she added wistfully.
This would explain why my younger brother with his long golden curls was often mistaken for my younger sister when we were kids. Apparently, my mom has a much harder time letting go than I do, at least when it comes to hair.
It also shed some light on the fact that despite being a 30-something married woman and mother of two, in my mother’s eyes, I am still a kid who shouldn’t be allowed to make decisions without her guidance, especially when it comes to hair.
I assured her I wouldn’t let them use the “horrible clippers” and asked her to refrain from commenting or whining about the fact that we were getting his hair cut if she wanted to come along.
I thought we were clear until I stopped at her house to pick her up and the barrage of comments started again.
For a moment there, she really started to make me nervous and I actually considered scrapping the haircut altogether. The message she was sending was clear–don’t make him grow up faster than he needs to.
But being the stubborn person I am, the more my mother resisted my decision, the more certain I became that I would, indeed, be getting my son’s haircut.
While I’d love to stop time and keep Jack from growing for a bit to savor each day a little more, the truth is I can’t do that and a haircut wasn’t going to make a lick of difference. He was still going to keep on growing and turning more into a boy each day, leaving the shadows of infancy behind him.
I’ve come to terms with that. It’s an inevitable part of parenthood after all.
Also, I was pretty sure he would still look like my same cute son after a trim. My mom, however, wasn’t convinced and seemed to think any mistake would have grave consequences.
So, we were lucky to have a skilled stylist at Snip-Its named Nicole who managed to take my wish for a trim and my mother’s loaded directives for him to “still look like a baby” and deliver a bit of both.
Surprisingly, the actual haircut was the easiest part of it all. Jack sat in the little chair as calm and patient as can be while I shot my mother a look that I hope said, “Please just stop talking.”
Before we knew it, the little guy was done. He looked a bit older, and possibly even a bit more handsome, if I do say so myself. He got a prize for his bravery and a certificate acknowledging the accomplishment.
And for those of us who have trouble letting go, there was even a few snips of hair to save as a memento so I can hold onto this little piece of his babyhood forever.
I think I may just have to share a lock or two with my mom.