When she decided that she wanted me to cut it. She has been talking for a while now about how she wanted to cut her hair and give it to Locks of Love (this is a program that takes hair donations and turns them into wigs for kids who have lost their hair because of sickness). Then today she finally said she wanted me to cut it. And I DID AND she LOVES it! Holy cow it was a scary moment. And part of me is really, really sad. In fact, I've cried several times since I started writing this. She looks so grown up now (a fact that is hard to discern from pictures of her back). She's not my little baby anymore; I don't dress her, I don't wipe her bum, or even brush her teeth very much. And now she's gone and made her own decisions about her own hair. She's so excited about the chance to do it, brush it by herself and make it look how she wants it to. It's such a big step. One that I am so proud of her for making, but one that is difficult to watch. She's growing up. I feel a bit trivial for being so sad, it is just hair and it will grow back. Her hair was beautiful long and it is incredibly cute shorter. But the truth is she is taking responsibility for herself; I'm not the responsibile one any longer (at least about her hair) and that is a hard thing to let go of.
I believe that as parents we have to allow our children space to do and be the people they want to be. I truly believe that it is her head and that she ought to be the one making the decisions about it. In part, I am relieved that she wanted to cut it (is that part of the sadness?). It was becoming a battle and a hassle. All of a sudden, when she started kindergarten, she would only wear it in a ponytail and then everday it was a rats nest of tangles and food particles. Everytime we washed it there was tons of work we had to do. And she didn't want to hold still or sit through it. So maybe it is a good thing. She sure is happy about it. I think I might be too. It is her head and, oh, does she look grown up. She knew what she wanted, she made a decision and she trusted me to believe that she knew what she wanted AND she trusted me enough to do what she asked. It's hard to believe that there was so much wrapped up in the ends of that golden hair.
As an aside, I totally butchered her hair and I think we've got to take her to a salon and get it properly trimmed. But when I was talking to her about it this evening she said "We don't need to get it fixed, mommy. You did an awesome job and I love it!" What a kiddo that one is!