Hair! Long, Beautiful Hair!

When I was 6 years old my family moved to a new town. The first person I met would become my best friend. I can still remember that day very clearly. She came running down the hill next to my new house and slammed into my back. “Hi! My name is Beverly! What’s yours?”
Bev lived across the street from me. We spent the years going back and forth between our houses. Sleepovers, picnics, talking on the phone, sitting on the stone wall in front of her house or the stone steps by my driveway and just chatting about anything and everything.

me and bev
Then we grew up. I left to go to college. I got engaged and then married. We lived different lives. However, through everything we always knew that the other would always be there. No matter what we could depend on each other when we really needed it.

Then one night I got a phone call. “Andrea, I need you to sit down. (pause) Are you sitting? I really need you to sit.”
When someone tells you to sit down you know nothing good is going to be said. Fear and dread filled me as I assured her I was sitting.

“I have Leukemia.”

It is like a rock being dropped into the pit of your stomach. We talked about how strong she is and how she would beat it. We talked about how she needed everyone around her to be strong for her. Life went on.

Then in September 2001 her body stopped fighting. She lost the fight against the disease. She fought hard. She didn’t let Leukemia take her easily.
My husband is the one who got the phone call. He is the one who had to tell me that the girl I had been friends with for over 17 years was gone. I was heart broken….it has been 13 years and I am still heart broken. I miss her more than anything.

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She made a huge impact on me. I can’t talk about my childhood without her name coming up. I even gave Princess the same middle name as Bev. I promised Bev I wouldn’t let Leukemia take away her spirit; that she would live.

I cut my hair; my long, curly hair. I did it in front of my entire church. I donated it to a charitable organization that makes wigs for cancer patients. “Hey cancer! You may take away, but I am giving back!” Maybe it isn’t a lot but it helps. It will help someone. Maybe the person who wears my hair will beat cancer. I sure hope so.

I know I must have pictures somewhere but I can’t find them.

Fast forward many years (7? I can’t remember). Sweet, sweet Elf’s hair reached her waist. “Mommy, I am ready to cut my hair and send it to kids who need it. I want to donate it just like you did Mommy.”
Oh this girl is simply awesome.
This fall Elf got a whole lotta hair cut off. An entire 12 inches to be exact. One glorious foot of thick, shiny hair. It is being sent to Children With Hair Loss. We picked them because all applicants get their hair pieces for free. I like that. I think Bev would also.

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**Please excuse the picture quality. I don’t have a fancy camera so I do the best I can with what I have 🙂

The Haircut

I have been meaning to write about this since the day it happened. I keep putting it off because I wanted Princess to feel a bit better about the really bad decision she made.

On August 21 we were all in the homeschool room. As I was walking over to Bug to help him with a math problem I noticed there was hair on the floor. There are 3 girls in the house and we all have long hair. I assumed someone had brushed their hair and left behind a mess. I bent over to pick it up…

“Oh!
“Oh my! Who cut their hair?”

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I knew the answer before I finished the question as all eyes, except one pair, looked up at me surprised. Princess put her head down and covered her eyes with her hands.

“May I see?”
She slowly crept toward me.
“Oh my.you really did a number, didn’t you.” I asked softly.

Princess proceeded to wail. Forget crying this was all out wailing. The best part is it was complete with singing.
“Me hair! Me miss me hair! Me cut me hair and I want it baaaaacccccckkkkkk!!!!!!!”

Yes, Princess deals with her feelings through song. She sings when she is happy, bored, sad, angry.
“Me happy! I singing to you because me happy!”
“Stop you crying Baby Zen. Stop you crying because I love you! Mommy loves you. Daddy loves you. Stop you crying Baby Zen!”
“Me mad at Mommy! Me mad at Mommy! She is unfair to me! She no like me!”

Yes, these are all lyrics she has sang. It is amusing. I love it. It helps her figure out what she is feeling and it is so much better than a temper tantrum; which she is also prone to.

Anyway, back to the hair.

Princess ran to my bed and climbed into Daddy’s side. She got under the covers and hid. I wasn’t mad so I knew this was “buyer’s remorse” that I was dealing with. I had the job of convincing her it wasn’t that bad.

I didn’t succeed.

I told her it would grow back. I told her it wasn’t that big of a deal. That was wrong! It just made her more upset because to her it WAS a big deal. Her precious locks were gone and she had no one to blame but herself. That is a lot of feelings for a 4 year old to deal with.

I refused to “fix” the hair cut because, frankly, it would just make it worse. So I have watched her hair grow back slowly. Once it is long enough I will straighten it out. It will be a few more weeks before I try that.

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So did Princess learn a lesson? Of course not. A few days later I looked at Zen and saw he got his first hair cut and I didn’t have his hair to save for his baby book because it was an unauthorized trim :/ I did straighten his out. I had to. It would have looked quite odd with one random long hair down his forehead.

I was upset, not because his hair was cut, but because I didn’t get to save it. I was also upset that I didn’t learn a lesson and hide the scissors better.

Needless to say they are far, far, far from Princess’s reach now.

Kids make bad decisions. Heck, adults make bad decisions. I am not angry. Princess was curious and she learned a lesson. OK, so the lesson didn’t stick 100%, but she at least learned that her hair should only be cut by a grown up. I count that as a win.