Hannah’s Hair, Part II

Back in November I engaged in some serious soul-searching about my relationship with Hannah’s hair. At the time she asked me to cut her hair short, I balked, and she changed her mind. I was surprised by my resistance. It turns out I liked her long hair, and I was possibly more attached to it than she was. Which I didn’t feel entirely OK with – I mean, really, why should I object to my daughter’s own self-expression? It’s just hair, it grows back, and it was never mine to begin with.

A recent shot of Hannah’s long hair

That was almost 4 months ago, and I hadn’t heard another word about haircuts from Hannah. I recently suggested that I give her a trim to even out the ends, and she said that I should never cut any of her hair off. So while I remained at odds with myself about her hair, I was secretly pretty happy. But then on Sunday, out of the clear blue sky she took her safety scissors to her own head and then presented the evidence to me. When asked why she did it, she told me, “I always wanted a haircut.”

The leavings of the haircut

So, I did my best to repair her work. Which wasn’t easy, because I was also holding a fussy baby at the time. Plus I am not really good at cutting hair, and my heart really wasn’t in it. I was very sad when I cut a good 3 inches off in one swoop. Yes, it will grow back, but it will take a while. It took 4 years for it to get that long, so I imagine it will be a year or two at least until it’s long again.

New hairdo, first pass
My first attempt at repairing the damage

There was some crying from both Hannah and I. She was initially sad to lose the long hair. She was also sad that I wouldn’t let her keep the clippings and play with them. But she also thinks the new ‘do is novel and exciting. Kids don’t dwell on the past, not like adults, so she moved on really quickly. But I’m still taken aback whenever I see her. I’m the one who can’t accept that what’s done is done.

Another barrette shot
The new ‘do with some barrettes

Our whole ordeal yesterday involved three haircuts. One in the afternoon that Hannah gave herself, and then my first attempt immediately after. It was OK, but rather uneven, so I gave it one last try in the evening. It’s still far from perfect, and I think we may want to visit a professional at some point to clean it up. But I’m trying not to be a perfectionist about it, after some rather traumatic haircuts in my own childhood. She’s 4, it will be OK if it’s not perfectly even. Right?

New hairdo, second pass
The final product

At this point I’m trying to be upbeat. I think the self-inflicted haircut is a near-inevitable rite of passage, and we’ve emerged relatively unscathed. Hannah’s hair will grow back, and in the meantime I’m sure that it will be much easier to take care of. Hannah actually loves having bangs, since her hair isn’t in her eyes as much. And the new haircut is sort of cute. Right? (Please say yes, I tried really hard to salvage things, and I’m feeling a little fragile right now).

Oh, the joys of parenting. You never know what adventure a random Sunday will bring. 😉

PS – If you’re not keeping up with our Flickr photostream, check it out. I add new photos pretty regularly.

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  1. oh what would childhood be without a self-done haircut? I think the results look really cute, though I couldn’t even imagine trying to fix it while holding her brother. Nice work, Amber!

  2. So let me see… You purposely didn’t buy Hannah any pink or “girly” type clothes, so as not to inflict gender stereotypes, yet you so wanted her to have long flowing locks?? Hmmm… 😉

    Anyway, I think it looks lovely. Very cute for sure! I’m sure she’ll enjoy this look, and you’ll get used to it too.

  3. Steve laughed when I told him your story. When he was 5 and his sisters were 3 and had long red and blonde hair…Steve cut it all off just before family pictures. More like, he scalped Lauranne and hacked at Jocelyn. His mother almost killed him – she actually sent him for 2 weeks to his aunts house because she was just that mad at him. Her girls were ruined. She was devestated.

    Myself, I wish Emma could actually grow some hair, but it is so much easier than my Hannah’s which is long and naturally curly so it knots like made and is a bitch to comb in the morning.

    Hannah looks so adorable with the bob, and I understand what she means about the bangs thing….they are a prest when they are always in your eyes. And just think, no more elastics for a while!

  4. She’s a pixie! So cute and fewer tangles. 🙂

  5. Michelle says:

    Wow, you’re definitely in my husband’s camp when it comes to the hair, but I love clean and pretty cuts, so my daughter wins the haircut battle each time (since I’m the one that takes her to my hair dresser anyway!). Hannah’s hair is very cute, so no worries about what you think is a hack job! She looks older, which is an unfortunate side-effect that happened when my daughter had her first real cut too. 🙁

  6. The haircut doesn’t even look bad, and you have a great story tell Hannah when she’s older!

    Oh, and I’ve learned something; I will specifically teach Victoria that scissors are not to be used to cut hair 🙂

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  1. […] my daughter Hannah’s hair, and my relationship to it. I’ve blogged about that time she took matters into her own hands with her blunt-nosed safety scissors. I have blogged about my own hair, and my relationship with […]

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