This Is The Way The World Ends, Not With A Bang, But A Haircut

February 18, 2010

This boy?


This wee, mop-headed baby boy is gone. With one careless, husband-directed trip to the hair salon, he is no more. He is now boy-boy. Again, only more so this time, so much more – I don’t know – Junior Banker, if Junior Bankers had front comb-overs, which I suppose some of them do:


I don’t think that my heart can stand this, all this change. Am I going to shatter every time that he gets a haircut? Am I going to fall to pieces every time one of his curls hits the floor of a SuperCuts and gets swept away by a hard-bristled broom?

He grows and he grows and he grows and every inch of him changes, every day, and I find myself resisting it, his movement forward, his journey up and out of babyhood, this journey that will take him through boyhood and through adolescence and beyond, ever further away from me, and ugh, this is how it starts, doesn’t it, the inevitable, terrible transformation of a mother into desperate, grasping creature of need, into a woman who cannot let go of her children, who cannot, especially, let go of her son, who wants to keep him clasped to her chest forever, always close, always hers, her baby?

Is this inevitable? Am I doomed to have my heart shattered endlessly? Am I going to turn into a desperate, clingy, salon-averse harpy who hisses at all who would take her child or her locks away from me? Will I be the worst mother-in-law in the history of the world, ever? I AM TERRIFYING MYSELF, GODS HELP ME.

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    Another Suburban Mom February 20, 2010 at 6:03 pm

    Once I got past the 1st haircut, which really seems to take the baby away, I am actually all for the kiddy haircuts, especially for PP.

    It would take very little prodding from her to get me to take her to Supercuts for the Suri Cruise bob, mostly because she is so reluctant to have her hair washed and combed and brushed on any regular basis.
    .-= Another Suburban Mom´s last blog ..Friday Foodie- Pork Tenderloin =-.

    Elizabeth (@claritychaos) February 20, 2010 at 6:37 pm

    I have a question – is it especially with a son? Or is it especially with the baby of the family? Because I only have boys, so I don’t know differently…but I don’t seem to have as much of a problem with my firstborn (6.5) moving on to the next stage, maybe a little more a hard time with the middle boy (3.5), and the wee one (14 months)?? Oh, I am in complete denial that he’s not still a baby. Like an infant. Even though he was walking at 8 months and considers himself a full participant in the boy-pack.

    So what do you think? Sons? Or baby? Whatever it is, I feel you. When I first had my first son, I thought – oh…I’m going to have to be some poor girl’s mother-in-law! It is hard to let go. But I’m with you on not wanting to turn into that pathetic needy woman who babies her 25 year old son.

    HELP! (:P)
    .-= Elizabeth (@claritychaos)´s last blog poet =-.

    Judy February 22, 2010 at 10:36 am

    I can’t tell you if it’s sons or babies, because my son IS the baby – the one born after two daughters and a long spell with several miscarriages. Oh yes, babied!

    I do know, thought, that there is more of a feeling of discovery with a boy. We’re used to the feminine growth patterns, and somehow it seems strange to have one of those Other Creatures as our child. There’s a special something between a mother and a son.

    Val February 21, 2010 at 2:44 am

    I get what you are saying, but somehow I’ve never really had that feeling. I think it is super-cute whenever my 16 month old gets a trim and looks a little more like Mark Harmon. :) And I truly relish all the little steps he takes toward independence. But maybe that is because I see the relationship that my husband has with his parents. (like Jon mentioned above). When I was traumatized by childbirth and my son was in the NICU, my husband put me to bed and called to cry to his Mom. He didn’t want to break down in front of me – but felt safe venting to her. And his parents rushed right over to give him a shoulder to cry on. I know that my son will always always be my baby boy – even when he is big enough to rock me instead of me, him.
    Or maybe it is just because I can’t wait for him to go to school so I can have some time to myself!! :)
    I know that platitudes don’t help, but I do think that the tighter you hold onto someone, the more they try to escape.
    Good luck with your struggle – you are a lovely mommy and your boy will appreciate it for the rest of his life (probably once he turns 30).

    Nikki February 21, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    My boys are 17 & 11. Yikes! Did I just admit that? Yes I did!!! They grow up so fast. So, so, so fast! And sorry the bittersweet never stops. I cried when my oldest got his 1st cut at 2, definitely understand. I took the power in my hands with my youngest and learned to cut hair. Now I cut all my kids’ hair and I have 5 of them …. hahaha. :)

    Sierra Black February 22, 2010 at 2:51 am

    Oh, I feel your pain!

    A week before my second child was born, my mom took my three-year-old for an overnight to let me get some good sleep. When I went to pick her up the next day, her waist-length honey-brown curls had been lopped off in a cute, chin-length bob.

    Proof that Mom knew she was in trouble? In the two hours since the haircut, she’d had a dozen before-during-after photos printed and put into a little book, and also saved all the hair trimmings.

    I said, “Thanks mom. Next time you’re going to take my firstborn child for her first haircut, could you at least let me know so I can come along?”

    She said, “I knew you’d never agree to it.”


    Then I went home and CRIED. I’ve never quite forgiven her.

    But it turns out she was right. Those beautiful curls were a beautiful pain in the ass. We fought about washing and brushing them almost every day. I still miss them, but I’ve kept the girl’s hair short ever since.

    I realized that she had been starting to avoid certain types of play because her hair would get tangled or dirty and then she’d have to *gasp*horror*scream* wash it and let it be brushed.

    She has a whole lifetime to learn the “too pretty play rough” tropes. I don’t need to help drive that lesson home with her hairstyle.
    .-= Sierra Black´s last blog ..Link Round-up =-.

    Christa February 22, 2010 at 9:50 am

    I have loved, loved, loved my two children. I have been a stay at home mum, and relished the role.
    My two are now 22 and 19, one about to finish university (and going to work abroad), and one about to start.
    I went through a period of adjustment, and I have to say, that now, I cannot wait for the next stage of life without always putting my children first.
    20 odd years of being focused on them is a long enough job for anyone.
    The pleasure I get from seeing them as adults who have turned out better than I could ever have dreamed, is payment enough.
    It’s my turn now!

    Maya February 27, 2010 at 4:06 am

    I understand. My 12 month old son’s hair is getting long. I don’t think it’s terrible long, just starting to curl over his ears. In the past few weeks everyone has been commenting on “how looong” it’s getting, and with that the implied suggestion to cut it.

    I can’t. I won’t.

    I think baby boys like delicious and teeny with their long, fine curls and he won’t be this way for long. As soon as he gets a haircut it’s like you said, he’ll be a boy. So, I’m going to hold on to my baby just a little bit longer.
    .-= Maya´s last blog ..Friday Favorites =-.

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