First cut

…Shining, gleaming,
Streaming, flaxen, waxen
Give me down to there hair
Shoulder length or longer hair
Here baby, there mama…”

 – ‘Hair’, the musical

There is something about a child’s first haircut that has enormous significance in the maternal psyche. It’s been months since we cut Millie’s hair but I’ve been meaning to post about it because in witnessing the event and photographing it I could tell that something was happening that I wasn’t fully grokking but wanted to preserve and pass on. I mean, I get it; I got it, I understood in a way, but there’s a current here that runs underneath the place where I comprehend these particular connections, somewhere in the mommish deep.

The uncut curls a year ago.

The uncut locks a year ago.

It has to do with the softness and fineness of those first baby locks, the innocence and vulnerability associated with them and the fact that those same locks are still attached to a fully-functioning humanoid who is now already back-sassing you and refusing to eat certain foods. That and something more. I don’t know. I should ask Angela to pontificate, but since we are always so busy now and the only time we spend together when we might have conversations without distractions is devoted to 1) information transfer regarding calendar coordination, and 2) our quest to catch up watching past episodes of Dr. Who, it might never happen.

After the shearing, on a recent outing to our favorite breakfast joint, Daddy has forgotten to put a hairband in and the plate of French toast and syrup is just about to arrive.

After the shearing, on a recent outing to our favorite breakfast joint, Daddy has forgotten to put a hairband in and the plate of French toast and syrup is just about to arrive.

With only the preceding ado, then, I present several photos from the day the scissors first closed on Emilia’s beautiful little tresses. Hillary, a young woman who is a very special person in Millie’s life and in our family, came over to participate in the event. Somewhere I have some great photos of Mara’s first cut, too, which I will post sometime.

Millie and Hilly.

Millie and Hilly.

Trust.

Trust.

If every child of every age could have someone they know loves them hold their hand when big things are happening, that would be great. That's my wish. Can that please be?

If every child of every age could have someone they know loves them hold their hand when big things are happening, that would be great. That’s my wish. Can that please be?

The first snip.

The first snip.

The rest is easy.

The rest is easy.

Update — Here’s one of Mara’s first haircut, and just for fun, another one from when she was five:

Mara was about 15 months old.

Mara was only about 15 months old the first time Angela cut her hair.

Mara carefully watches her bangs being trimmed.

June 2010: Mara carefully watches her bangs being trimmed.

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7 Responses to “First cut”


  1. 2 James Crossley May 20, 2014 at 10:18

    Oh, man, haircuts. Epic. I must have told you about our firstborn’s first one. Number two has yet to go under the scissors, and I’m hoping to put that off for another year, if only for the symmetry with her brother’s experience.

  2. 4 Mom May 28, 2014 at 14:36

    Big Day! That little bright and happy face just makes me smile every time I see her. The hair-do is a success.

  3. 6 Cheryl Otto-Cunningham July 5, 2014 at 13:51

    It’s not always the first cut that’s a big day. I watched my 20 year old blond, long haired beauty cut it all off for a pixie cut. At the end I was nearly comatose, she was in love, and her previous glorious locks rested on the counter ready to be sent to be made into wigs for children with cancer. It wasn’t until I saw a truly beautiful picture of her, in a pose where the camera was above her that I saw the true beauty in her new look. Ah, parenthood…….. always a work in progress.

    • 7 Matt July 7, 2014 at 07:15

      Hi Cheryl,
      That’s a great little story you’ve told. Given the kindness underlying the cut, it seems that it would be easy for anyone other than a parent to see the beauty in your daughter’s pixie cut. Thanks for reading and commenting.


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