Today, as I twirled a few strands of hair with my fingers, memories of how my Mom used to cut my hair came flooding back. As a little girl, when people would ask me what my Mom did, I would say that she was a hairdresser, and she had, in fact, gone to hairdressing school.
Around grade 7 or 8, everyone started ironing their hair – I’m not talking flat iron – I’m talking real iron. I told my Mom the theory; “Lets try it.” She replied. She pulled out the ironing board, brushed out my hair, and literally, ironed it (in the traditional sense) until it was straight. We used this method until finally we got a flat iron that worked on our curls.
In my twenties, I asked her to cut my bangs, and she messed them up so badly, “Moooom,” I whined, halfway between amused and annoyed “Seriously?” She couldn’t stop grinned, “Hold still.” She told me with a half laugh, “Stop making that face.” She chopped at my hair in an attempt to fix the damage, “I’ll fix it.” she promised, “There, go look in the mirror.” She would always say this when she was done. She had managed to make the bangs look decent, but the next time I asked, I reminded her of the incident and the whole process started over.
A month before Christmas, two years ago, my Mom came home from shopping, “Look what I bought while Baba was busy!” She announced proudly. “Mom! What are you doing buying things right before Christmas!?” I asked her a little annoyed as I was currently struggling to find her a gift. “It’s for both of us.” she told me, a twinkle in her eye as she called me into the kitchen to unpack the purchase. “We got a new hair straightener, curling wand, mini straightener, and…Do you notice anything different?” she giggled as I gave her a once over. “Extensions!” I exclaimed. “Yes!” she laughed, “Aren’t they cool! Your friends are going to be soooo jealous!” At this point I couldn’t help but laugh and agree, my initial frustration completely gone. My Mom was cool (did I mention all the appliances were in zebra print?) but she was also the most thoughtful and generous person I knew.
These memories made me smile, and I realized that these might be some of the first memories I’ve experienced without also feeling sad.