Chopped: A new haircut for Shelby


Shelby got her hair chopped off last weekend. It wasn’t something we planned. Heck, I had no idea it was going to happen. I asked Mike to take her to get her bangs trimmed and she came home with her hair up to her ears. All her long blonde hair was gone. And I was shocked. Truthfully, I cried. I was so mad. Shelby and Mike said they wanted to surprise me. I don’t like surprises. And I don’t like being left out of girly decisions. Two years ago, Mike took Shelby to get her ears pierced. I was in Brazil on business and the two of them proudly called me to tell me about their latest adventure.

“Mommy, guess what?”

“What Shelby?”

“Daddy let me get my ears pierced.”

“What?” I asked in shock.

“We went to the mall today and Daddy let me get my ears pierced.”

When I was about seven, I begged my mom and dad to get my ears pierced. They said no. I had to wait until I was eight. When I finally turned eight I begged some more … and for Valentine’s Day my mom took me to Newberry’s in Canyon Country to get my ears done. It was a really, really big deal. I remember the excitement and anticipation. And I remember the pinching (ouch, pain!) and the pretty, sparkly earing I chose (topaz, my birthstone).

I had always imagined when my own daughter got her ears pierced it would be a memorable mother-daughter experience, similar to the one I had with my mom. But no. It wasn’t. I’m still mad about it (if you haven’t picked up on that yet).

So when Mike let Shelby chop off eight inches of her hair on a whim, without consulting me, I was mad all over again. Why is it that I have such a strong reaction to things like this? I think I might be over reacting, but I also think that a lot of mamas out there might react like have.

I told Mike after the hair incident (I think that’s what I’m going to start calling it) that I really feel strongly that I should be able to do the “girl” things with Shelby, especially as she gets older and our relationship could possibly be strained by teenage angst and hormones. Shelby and I already have a complicated relationship. She is EXACTLY like me and we clash. A lot. It’s already getting tough to navigate. And I really cherish the "good” or “easy” moments we have. And when I think one has been stolen from me I react … ummm, badly. I wish I could have taken her to the fancy salon I go to and let my girl (Jenny) do her hair. I wish I could have directed the stylist as to what cut we’d like (I’m not happy with the cut at all). I wish. I wish. I wish. 

So? What would you have done? How would you have reacted if your husband came home from what was supposed to be a bang trim and your 8-year-old daughter’s hair was about eight inches shorter? Would you have exploded (I did)?

In the end, I sucked it up. I apologized for over reacting. And I told Shelby I loved her hair. It will grow on me … I’m sure of it. I’m just bummed out I wasn’t there to help her with the choice and experience the excitement of a really new and different haircut.