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Get your hair cut whenever you want – I can wait

Submitted by on Friday, 1 July 2011 One Comment

When Daphine was a girl, red shoes were forbidden – only “loose women” wore them, she was told.

As a result, as soon as she got her first job she took part of her first paycheck and bought a pair. Red lipstick and nail polish soon joined the ensemble, Daphine’s daughter told me recently. Daphine’s now 92 and still has a fondness for red.

I can relate. When I was a teen, eye makeup was banned – only “sluts” wear it, I was told. So was any lipstick bright than “barely there.” The day I turned 18, I bought my first eye shadow. I waited until I was in college to buy my first pair of red pumps. A few years later, they became fashionable and lost their appeal to me. I haven’t owned a pair of red shoes in 15 years.

It’s funny how each generation thinks it invented rebellion. I couldn’t imagine any mother in the history of motherhood being as unreasonable as mine. Yet, Daphine was born in 1919 and even way back then her mother had clung to outdated notions of fashion and decorum.

Which is why, although I’ve mentioned it more than a few times lately because he looks hot and uncomfortable, I’m going to quit asking Big Guy if he wants a hair cut.

It really is out of control. His most recent buzz cut (circa March) has grown into something that resembles Shaggy on “Scooby Doo.”  His head drips under his bike helmet and his karate gear. Yet, every time I ask  if he’s ready for trim, he says “no.”

It could be that he’s developed a bit of a Sampson syndrome – two of the best players on his basketball team were boys with pony tails, and a brown belt in his karate class has hair so long that for months I couldn’t tell him from his sister.

I suspect that mostly, though, it’s become a Cause for him, just as it was a Cause for his father when he opposed the buzz cut to begin with. I knew better than to nag Big Guy, but I had no idea that the mere asking was going to trigger his contrary streak. Fine. I won’t even ask anymore.

Fighting with a kid over hair is a silly battle not worth having. Not when there are so many other times when you have to go to the wall with them. I remember many times as a kid being forced into styles that looked cute on my slim, straight-haired cousins. They usually were somewhat less than attractive on chubby, frizzy-haired me. I had no say in the matter, though, and anger festered every time I looked in the mirror.

Besides, time has a way of taking care of these things if you wait long enough. A friend’s son sported a yard of blond hair all through his teens – it was the kind of locks that make women sick with envy when they see it on a guy. He was artistic, and the long hair was partly self-expression. He cut it off when he found out that potential employers didn’t like what he was expressing – he couldn’t find a job because of the hair.

He now sports close-cropped hair that perfectly complements his rugged, angular face, transforming him from rebel without a job to handsome young man. He’s also intelligent, articulate and thoughtful – he’s always been, but some people never looked past the pony tail before to see that.

Big Guy, I will never mention the length of your hair again. If it takes you until you’re 20 – or longer – to cut it, so be it. I’ll just have to learn to braid.

I think Daphine would like that.

Copyright 2011 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.


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One Comment »

  • Leslie Klinger said:

    OH I LOVE these problems….Do we cut our hair or not? I bet he looks handsome with his shaggy hair..very rock and roll. Good for you, Big Guy! Good job, Mommy…and I would look for red shoes with SPARKLES