For the love of a sister
In my fifty years of hairdressing, there have been many, many changes and an immense development of improved products, but there is one thing that I think will never change. That is man’s love for a woman with long flowing locks. Now it is easy for us as hairdressers to add length, almost any length to our client’s hair with the use of extensions. It is amazing when you think of it. We can make ourselves taller with heals, slimmer with spandex and sexier with extensions.
I could have used them the day Missy came in for a haircut. It was your average warm summer day. Being a Tuesday we were not overly busy and she was a walk in. In fact, she was our first customer of the day. Specializing in long hair, I was in my glory to see her sitting in my chair. Her hair in soft curls flowed a foot past the bottom on my chair. I would have to pump my chair up as high as it could go just to keep it off the floor.
There were a dozen styles happily running through my head. What would I do? What would I do?
With excitement I greeted her,” Good morning I am Chris. What may I do for you to day?”
“Cut it please,” she said.
“How much?” I asked, holding up my fingers to indicate a couple inches. “Just to make it even?”
With a catch in her throat she said.” No cut it short, really, really short.”
My heart fell. I so wanted to do my magic on this beautiful mane. My fingers stroking the silk strands as they flowed through my fingers. “Are you sure, you hair is so long and so beautiful?”
“You sound just like my husband he was almost in tears this morning when I told him I was coming to do this.” She sighed as she continued, “I feel bad for him but he has had several years to play with and enjoy my long hair.”
“May I ask why you are cutting it?”
“Well you see my twin sister has always been jealous of my long hair and the fact it has been this way for most of my life. She has not had the patience to go through the different annoying stages to get it like this. I am the kind of person who could be happy watching paint dry.” We both laughed I had never heard that before.
Once again, I asked, “Why are you cutting it then?”
Before she answered, she held her index finger up motioning me to wait a moment. She then reached into her oversized purse and took out a rather large plastic bag, which she laid on my station. On it was a sticker that read Cancer Society wig material.
She did not have to say another word. We shared silent tears as I carefully and lovingly cut her hair placing it gently in the plastic bag that one day would bring a little dignity to her sister.
When her husband came and picked her up you could see the shock seeing his short haired Missy but also the pride in his eyes. I hugged Missy as I crumpled her bill and placed it in the garbage. Missy showed her sister her love one strand at a time. And I learned a valuable lesson about unconditional love.
Guest author Christine Hannon has been a professional hairdresser for 50 of her 67 years. At sixteen, she started her career that included hairdressing, makeup artistry and modeling. Then suddenly at the age of twenty three her life was immeasurably changed due to a drunk driver. Her career as she knew and loved it was changed forever. Working in a salon until it was no longer physically possible she then worked from home. Her book A Hairdresser’s Diary shares many amazing stories on her journey. Her blog will give you much insight into her incredible life.
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