she has fallen and now she is awake


So, we can all agree Bunbun is truly adorable, right?

Y’know, those CURLS and that COLOUR and the FEEL and blahblahblah. I mean, it’s cute as fuck, but I get so icked when people start on about it.

Add in Bunbun’s love of water, love of physical activity, tendency to sweat profusely, aversion to hairwashing and total screaming condemnation of hair drying, and you’ve got some fearsome hair styles. Which we don’t care about. But you also get some fearsome stank, which we do. We cosleep* so hair funk is an uncool way to wake up.

I first cut her hair to get rid of the baby mullet when she was about 8 months old. Just a few snips in the bath – I save the hair though. Second haircut was post-flu because weeks of her hair getting stuck in eye goop, snot or spit was just too tragic. I saved some of that hair too.

Now I’m thinking of cutting it again – not a bob, not a trim, not a fringe. A real short hair cut. Pixie even. And damned if I can’t find a single blood photo, or story, or HINT that anyone else has done this. Not ‘repaired after a self-done job’ and not ‘making do with toddler fine hair’ or anything like that. And certainly not ‘dad-hair’ (fuck that gender essentialist bullshit).

Someone else, somewhere, must have deliberately and wilfully cut their daughter’s hair shorter than their chin. I’m talking Audrey/Amelie pixie here. Proper short. Dry in minutes, wash in seconds, short short short. But still not a crewcut or clipper job.

I don’t have an emotional attachment to her hair. I’ve never wept over it, for all I have kept the snippets (and lovely little things they are, perfect for doting grandparent presents). I don’t identify with it, or long for it, or dislike it. I do emotionally react to the way people perceive her hair and my relationship with it – I mightily dislike the assumption that Wolfman is behind the haircuts, that I must ADORE her hair and that I must want it to be longer.

Yet I haven’t cut it yet. I fear that my reaction to others is behind my desire to cut her hair. That I’m making feminine an uncomfortable place to be. Which is very much not my intention but I still fear it. Mostly because I’m growing my hair and I don’t feel the same way about that as I do about her hair. Wolfman pointed out that I’m not nearly as sweaty (usually), don’t put up a fight for washing and don’t need to be chased around to dry it. I don’t think my choice is entirely practical though – for all the lack of emotion I have about her hair, I have an excess when it comes to femininity. I have a horror at how constrained she is by her gender, how much judgement she already wades through when it comes to the existence of being a girl.

So I cut her hair again, just her fringe, and try to work out what my deal is. What I’m going to do about it.


4 responses to “Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaair

  1. Lu February 22, 2011 at 01:47

    My toddler hair was fairly pixie-ish*. I’ll see if I can find a photo for you – tomorrow!

    *Yes, I am tired, shuddup about the grammar mmkay?

  2. Rainbow February 22, 2011 at 14:47

    I never had long hair as a kid. Mum always had my hair cut short (kinda pixie but not really), more so because she couldn’t be bothered with long hair, and no one actually cared about whether it was long or short, cos it’s just hair. I didn’t grow my hair long-ish until I was a teenager. I think there are pics on my FB.

  3. Mistress of Boogie February 22, 2011 at 20:43

    For the same reasons you list, I’m in favour of short (as in pixie short) hair for Boogie. We have currently had five years of hair-washing pain… And I know exactly what you mean about constantly having to double-think your motives for everything that carries a gender tag (i.e. everything…), but your reasons for cutting it seems pretty sound to me, so I’d go for it. Poor Boogie has wanted short hair for ages – to the extent that she’ll get in front of the mirror and pin her hair behind her ears to show me how short she wants it. And so I send her off to the hairdresser’s (I’m not to be trusted with scissors round a small face!) with strict instructions to the BoogieMeister that she’s to have it cut how she wants it…and everytime she comes back with a small trim, having mysteriously suddenly ‘changed her mind’ at the hairdresser’s…And, yeah, I know, it really is time for me to step up and be the one to take her to the hairdresser’s!

  4. Cherry February 25, 2011 at 18:53

    When we were living in mangrove mountain at a hippy ashram, I went and joined the line for head shaving without mum and dad realizing it. yup.
    Honestly, as long as she is happy to have short hair, do it. If she shows no interest in her hair, do it. Some kids are precious about their looks though and tears may ensue. But you know what? It’s just frikken hair, it will grow back!

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