Seeing the ends of her golden hair gathered into a lavender ponytail holder, I had to choke back emotion. “It’s just hair, honey,” I assured her. “It will grow back.” My preschooler has been begging me to let her get her hair cut “just like mommy’s,” but I’ve been dragging my feet. Why? Well, I was worried she might change her mind. Or, more likely, that I would regret snipping off those sweet tendrils that used to brush up against my cheek when I was rocking her to sleep as a baby. These were her first curls, which had now grown into an unmanageable mane. Her hair had grown down to her shoulder blades, and she didn’t have the patience or desire to keep it maintained. Every morning was a struggle.
“Don’t brush my hair! No! It HURTS! Leave me alone!”
“Honey, we HAVE to brush your hair. It’s a mess. You have fine hair just like mommy’s and it’s all tangled!”
“But I LIKE Tangled! She’s a princess!”
You get the point.
So, this morning, we did it. My stylist friend cut off probably 8-10 inches of hair, in one fell swoop. Snip.
I ran the silky, curly strands through my fingers and my mind went back to a time when these ringlets were closer to her head, and smelled of sweet lavender shampoo. I felt a little sad, a little nostalgic, until I saw my young daughter transformed before my eyes. With this new angled bob, she somehow seemed both older and more innocent at the same time. I was wrong. It’s more than just hair. It’s an identity taking shape. This is her.