I debated whether or not to write this post. I mean, what’s so interesting about a haircut? But this event hasn’t left my mind since it happened three nights ago. When a thought stays with me this long, I know either God is trying to tell me something, or I have another writing topic brewing. Obviously, I decided I had a topic brewing.
For Christmas, one of the gifts from my mom was a set of kids’ hair clippers. Initially, I was a little surprised. I didn’t ask for hair clippers, and I wasn’t sure if she were insinuating something. Yes, my son’s hair was covering his eyes and, frankly, was kind of a mess, but in a cool way, of course. Once I decided how I should feel about this present, I made use of it (my mom assured me that she wasn’t insinuating anything. She thought they would come in handy since I had a son and was always looking for ways to save money.).
After learning everything I needed to know about cutting hair from the ten minute video, I proceeded to give Caleb a trim; however, his hair was too long for the clippers. I went straight for the scissors and did a decent job.
Feeling confident and anxious to try the clippers (I watched the video twice–I was an expert), I told Matt I should cut his hair. He needed a haircut, anyway, and I would save us money. He agreed.
So a few nights later after the kids were in bed and all the chores were finished, Matt sat down in a chair in the kitchen with a bright blue smock around his neck. Matt proceeded to explain that he wanted a ‘fade’, and we discussed the strategy for cutting his hair.
I looked over the written directions for this particular style and contemplated whether or not I should put back in my instructional DVD. After going over the plan with Matt a couple more times, we decided I was ready. I let Matt adjust the guard setting and got to work.
As I moved the clippers up the back of his head and watched his hair fall to the floor, I was gripped with a sudden realization–I didn’t know how to cut hair. I felt a twinge of panic as I looked at the clock that read 10:30. If I messed up, Matt had no recourse. He would have to go to work in the morning with whatever style I gave him.
Matt must have already dealt with this scenario in his mind because he did mention that if I messed up, he would completely buzz his head. This option was not one that I was willing to accept.
An hour later, with some guidance from Matt (he grew a little weary of my apprehension and aggressively used the clippers on himself at one point), I finally achieved ‘the fade.’ We played with different guard settings, and I used the scissors to trim and blend until I was satisfied that I had achieved the look. Or to put it more accurately, I cut until I was afraid to cut Matt’s hair any shorter.
I have to admit that I did a good job. Matt’s hair looked normal, and I had reached a milestone in my life. I could now give my family haircuts.
However, this pride was not the feeling that has stayed with me for the past three days. Instead, gratitude has consumed me. When I think of last Sunday night, I can’t help but remember one of the thoughts that entered my mind: “Matt and I are truly a married couple.”
Many times when I have said, “Well, you can tell we’re married,” I wasn’t paying Matt and me a compliment. We may have been snipping at each other at the time, or I was commenting on our lack of romance as we fell asleep on the couch for the seventh Friday in a row. What I felt Sunday was different.
Here I was cutting my husband’s hair when I didn’t know how, yet Matt trusted me. Or maybe he didn’t, but he was giving me the chance to try. It was really strange, but I felt that we were sharing an intimate moment as I ran the clippers across his head.
I’m sure Matt will read this post and think that he has a crazy wife. It was a haircut, not a religious experience, yet for me, it was more. I felt comfort in our marriage and knew that we had moved beyond the early years when we were still trying to figure out how to live in this new union, still slightly embarrassed to make a mistake in front of the other person.
Let’s be honest–had we been just dating, this incident would not have occurred. I have to have complete trust in a person in order to let him or her cut my hair. In fact, I experience a case of nerves any time I try a new stylist, so I feel privileged that Matt let me experiment on him. I, also, have to have complete trust in a person to willingly set myself up for failure.
The last three nights that Matt has come home I couldn’t help but look at his hair and smile. I am grateful for a partner who is willing to let me fail, and on his own hair, no less, and I am blessed that we are “truly a married couple.” Maybe God has been trying to talk to me after all….
And, no, Matt. Even though we shared this intimate moment, you may not cut my hair next.