When kid #3 was little and I got to choose her hairstyle, she had the cutest little bob with bangs. Her hair is straight and fine, so the bob was perfect for her. Then she got old enough to express a preference, which for several years was heavily influenced by Disney princesses (long, long, long) and Hannah Montana (the good old days when Miley Cyrus had long hair and kept her tongue in her mouth).
But she barely brushed all that hair and rarely managed to get all the shampoo or conditioner rinsed out. Forget putting it in a ponytail or letting me French-braid it. All that hair just hung in her face and mocked me.
About a year ago, she decided she wanted to change her hairstyle. I took her to Mary and she cut about eight inches off. Kid #3 brought a picture of what she wanted, printed from the internet.
Kid #3’s picture was of an anime character. A character I refer to colloquially as a cartoon. This will become important in the next few paragraphs.
She loved the new ‘do. She even brushed her hair and rinsed sufficiently. I took her for trims every now and then. She needed a trim last week, so I took her to my new salon and let her handle her stylist while I got my hair trimmed by my stylist.
She was in tears on the way home. Her hair was cut “too short and looked effing horrible,” she said. I tried consoling her, “It’s a bit shorter, but has the same essential shape.” No go.
I tried understanding. I tried logic. I’ve tried to teach her that all the little crappy things in life are to be dealt with and overcome. Don’t become a hermit because you’ve got cramps. Don’t refuse to go outside because you have a bad hair day or those pants seem to make your butt look fat.
My son doesn’t have these appearance issues. It seems to be a female challenge. We aspire to a pleasing appearance at the cost of living our lives. I understand we all want to feel attractive, to be comfortable in our own skin; I also understand that we all get pimples and bloat and frizzy hair. None of that is a disfigurement.
So kid #3’s response to her too short haircut? “Can I just get it all cut off?”
Um, no. And how does that solve the problem?
Also, let’s remember she modeled her hairstyle on a cartoon character.
The current solution is always wearing a hoodie a la the Unabomber.
This, my friends, is why God gave us wine. And possibly tequila.