When my oldest daughter was 7 years old, she had the cutest little haircut. Her dirty-blond hair shaped her sweetheart face and her long locks fell down to her shoulders. She had bangs that completed the look and her hair was very easy to care for when properly cut. It was straight and on the thick side, but it grew incredibly fast.
So fast, in fact, that we had to have her bangs cut quite often. During a very busy workweek, I had come home one night to her pleas for a trim. She said her bangs were in her face during school that day and they were really starting to bother her. Our hairdresser was closed, and I was less than thrilled about the overpriced trims that became a frequent occurrence.
I had cut her bangs before, but they never came out quite as straight as when it was professionally done. I don’t know what I was thinking. It was more likely I was exhausted and not thinking at all, because I crazily figured that trimming her bangs with a buzzer would be a good idea. Maybe I could get them totally straight that way, I thought out loud.
So I sat my daughter on the kitchen counter and started buzzing away. It was easy. Then I had another brilliant idea — maybe holding down her bangs across her head would flatten them out so I could see just how straight the cut would be. She was a very patient customer and sat quietly until I finished, not even fidgeting.
Ten minutes later, voila! I pulled off the straightest trim. It was clean and even, and looked fabulous — until I removed the hand that was flattening the top portion of her bangs. Then, much to my dismay, I realized the bangs were probably about an inch shorter than they should have been. Not only that, but I had accidentally shaved off her left eyebrow in the process.
She jumped down and ran to the mirror to look. Now, my daughter thankfully has light-colored eyebrows, but you can certainly notice when one is missing. Yet, at age 7, I suppose, you might not notice, or at least not right away. She looked very carefully at her reflection and I said, “Your bangs look good, right?”
She didn’t answer immediately and then said, “I guess so.”
But she kept looking and then mentioned that something looked weird.
The worst thing you can do after you complete a beauty blunder is not own up to it, but that’s just what I did, because I thought that if she didn’t notice, it wouldn’t bother her as much as if she did. At that point, the damage was done. I couldn’t grow her eyebrow back.
We began dinner and homework and she forgot about it until she took a shower and looked again at her eyebrow-less face in the mirror.
“There’s something wrong,” she said as she kept looking.
I had to acknowledge it now, because she was realizing that her face had changed, if only temporarily.
I told her I mistakenly took some of her eyebrow off with the buzzer. I told her I was really sorry, it didn’t look that terrible, and it would grow back. At first, she was upset, but not angry. The next day her friends asked her what happened, and she told the whole story about how I had shaved off her eyebrow. Before we knew it, her eyebrow grew back in, and she forgot about the incident for a while.
I thought she forgot about it for good — until last year, when she brought it up, “Hey Mom, remember when you shaved off my eyebrow, and I had to go to school like that until it grew back in?”
Oh, yeah, I certainly do.
Danielle Sullivan, a mom of three, has worked as a writer and editor in the parenting world for more than 10 years. Sullivan also writes about pets and parenting for Disney’s Babble.com. Find her on Facebook and Twitter @DanniSullWriter, or on her blogs, Just Write Mom and Some Puppy To Love.