Where to start? It’s been a busy week in America. Some of it I am saving for separate blog posts so I don’t inundate you with mundane detail all at once. I like to piecemeal my inanity. The biggest event was the lopping off of the familial tresses for Locks of Love [hereinafter referred to as LOL], the charity organization which makes wigs from donated hair for economically challenged children with “long-term hair loss”. MCV made appointments for Things 1 & 3 at the Bocz Salon in downtown Seattle with her and Mood Ring Momma’s stylist Juan. I knew it was swishy when I saw what looked to be a Mariner’s wife sitting in a chair, her hair in foils, toenails painted an elegant Chanel eggplant black, feet ensconced in Prada sandals, and a Louis Vuitton parked at her elbow. Then again, maybe it was just a Mercer Island/Medina/Bellevue prima donna. Same diff.
If memory serves me correctly, Thing 1 got the idea to grow her hair for Locks of Love during a visit to Raftbuddy’s approximately six years ago. Both Raftbuddy and her Thing 1 had both cut off their hair to donate to LOL. In order to donate a hank of hair, one needs ten inches in length of non-colortreated hair, hair preferably hydrated with few fly away ends. I had never seen Raftbuddy’s hair so short. Her hair short was longer than my hair long ever was, which is to say it came to the middle of her back. Able to sit on her natural honey blonde locks in college, Raftbuddy was the subject of many a man’s Rapunzelian fantasies (to say nothing of the fact that she was a cheerleader). She and her heir, it turns out, had hair to spare.
Then Thing 3 decided about three years ago to grow her hair as well. When it came time to cut the hair, I admit I was a little worried that Thing 1 would feel upstaged by her little sister since she had been growing her hair twice as long. Thing 1’s hair grows agonizingly slowly. Thing 3’s hair, half as thick as her sister’s, grows alarmingly fast, one of life’s little trade offs.
So in we trooped sporting our Target wardrobes to the fancy pants salon: me and my Things, Mood Ring, MCV, and the Radish, prepared for tears. Thing 3 went first. Juan, the only hairdresser I have ever met who does not like to chat, measured the tresses with a metal tape measurer after first combing out the hair into a ponytail. Then he snipped snipped snipped. And just like that, voila, Thing 3 was shorn and shaped, followed by Thing 1. They have never looked cuter. Years of awkward hair styles, sweaty necks, and hair wrapped around ponytail holders in tangled messes, gone baby, gone.
I don’t think I have ever had ten inches of hair in my life. Well, at least not all at one time. I did not, do not, have the patience. My grandmother kept a braid of her hair in the top drawer of her dresser. She cut it off into a bob when she was a teenager in the roaring 20’s. Where is that hair now? Did she feel as liberated as my daughters when the braid fell to the floor? Or did she feel violated like the Chinese when their queues were forcibly cut off? Hair, as I have discussed before, is a highly personal subject.
I confess my eyes welled when each hank of hair was severed, but not with remorse or sadness. My tears reflected the happiness of my girls as they joined the ranks of people, like Raftbuddy, who have gifted their hair, some several times over. And that is what I call the best “up do” ever.
Locks of Love (www.locksoflove.org) receives a 4star rating on http://www.charitynavigator.org.