Thursday, April 23, 2009

Cute Child Abuse

Here is why my husband is a good man: he takes the girls to get their hair cut.

Here is why my husband is a terrible man: he takes the girls to get their hair cut and they come home looking like Jim Carrey in Dumb and Dumber.

It’s particularly bad for the two year old.

“It went really well this time,” Thad explains last Saturday when he and Drew walk through the door. I wait for the punch line. I’m assuming there’s a punch line coming because, when I look at Drew, I have to squint my eyes to actually see her bangs. They are so short, they almost don’t exist from a straight-on view, instead sticking out from her hairline like a shelf.

“This is ‘going well?’” I ask, as I do one thing I swore I would never do as a mother, and wet my fingers with spit, patting it on her quarter-inch-long bang-remnants to see if I can convince them to stand down. They will not stand down.

“Well,” Thad explains, “the problem is, she just keeps turning her head, so the girl has to keep cutting it shorter and shorter to make it even.”

“This is not even,” I point out. “This is child abuse.”

“But it’s such cute child abuse!” says Thad, a man whose own mother used to tame the cowlick above his forehead by forcing it down with masking tape.

The truth is, though, it is cute child abuse. The way her face is now literally consumed by her eyebrows as they wiggle up and down like worms? Cute. And the six-mile-prairie of forehead visible between those eyebrows and her hair? Cute. And the hair shelf? Cute, especially when viewing it from the side, where the horizontal-ness of it truly shines.

I tend to roll my eyes about such abuses to other moms. Oh she’s wearing her dangly, clip-on, plastic-diamond earrings again. Eye roll. Oh, she insisted on turning this empty Tampax box into a hat. Eye roll. Oh, her father took her to get a haircut again. Eye roll.

But I secretly love it. It’s kind of like putting pantyhose on the dog’s head and watching him try and get it off. That haircut? It equals a month of parental entertainment. At least. If that's abuse, I'm guilty.

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