About a hundred years ago (or maybe four) I posed the question: Should I cut The Caterpillar's hair or not?  And you, The Internet, told me not to.  Apparently, I am quite obedient to the wishes of the Internet because other than one ill-advised moment where I didn't know where the scissors were, I have not taken the time or effort to have The Caterpillar's hair cut even once since she was born.  

I have no training in hair cuttery whatsoever.  But once when between high school and college while I was working as a counselor at a music camp, a friend asked me to cut his hair because we couldn't go off campus for two weeks and we were broke and poor and penniless.  I said something to the effect of, "Dude, you know I don't know how to cut hair, right?" 

And he replied with unique logic, "What's to know?  You pick up the hair, cut it with the scissors, you're done."  

And I was all, "Hmmm.  Point taken.  You have an appointment at ten o'clock this evening."

So we sat in the lobby of the girls dormitory late that night and I gave my very first haircut of my life.  I may or may not have used a regular pair of paper cutting scissors from the secretary's desk drawer.  I admit to nothing.  It didn't come out half bad if I do say so myself.  Which really just means no one noticed he'd gotten a hair cut the next day, but no one said, OH MY GOODNESS WHAT SMALL RODENT WAS GNAWING ON YOUR HAIR LAST NIGHT?!?!? either, and in my estimation, that.... is a success.

I generally stayed away from cutting hair in most other cases, that is until The Dormouse came around.  Somewhere during the year she turned two, I had someone cut bangs into her hair and that proved to be a cute look, but also a royal pain in the ass.  Bangs grow out quickly, you see.  And I have a hard time ponying up the dough for a $20 haircut where kids can watch three minutes of Scooby Doo cartoons while a hair stylist who is barely verbal (not just English, but any language at all) cuts a hasty, uneven swath through my kid's hair and then shoos us out of her area for the next victim client, like Sweeney Todd.  Except Sweeney didn't expect to be tipped before his clients victims left the chair. Suffice it to say, I am not a fan of places which shall remain nameless but where an elephant washes your hair.  

I am also not a fan of paying $40-$75 for a bang trim that takes forty seconds with a reputable hair stylist, so I taught myself to cut The Dormouse's hair and have done most of the maintenance all these years.  About once a year, I'd take her to a real hair stylist, have that person give her a proper haircut and then I'd take care of trimming it for the next nine months to a year or until I'd mucked it up so badly it needed a savior again. Recently, The Dormouse decided wanted her hair cut short and she now has a hairstyle that is above my ability to maintain, so I see us spending a lot more dollars on hair care in our future.

Trimming bangs is a mother dog, by the way.  They grow out unevenly in our gene pool and The Dormouse has a cowlick in the bangline which makes her look like the person who cut her hair was wearing a blindfold no matter how many episodes of Scooby Doo I forced her to sit through while I adjusted just a little more off this side, now just a little more off that.  I finally learned a few techniques that helped get her bangs exactly straight, but I'm afraid one of them was "'come over here and let Momma fix what she messed up yesterday.' Repeat daily for seven days."

So when The Caterpillar came along I said, "No bangs for you!" and that, more than any other reason, is why I have not had her hair cut in nearly four and a half years of life.

But all good things must come to an end and her hair had been looking pretty raggedy for awhile.  Take into account that no one in my family from the clan-of-the-straight-hair (that would have made a much more boring book title, by the way) has ever seen a curl that wasn't put there by an iron, so I have not clue one as to what to do with curly hair like The Caterpillar's.  I've combed it. I've put product in it. I've sprayed it.  I've braided it.  I've ponytailed it.  There is not a hair management device I've tried that doesn't come out in under twenty minutes, leaving her looking like a ragamuffin with a giant hair halo who can't even find her hairbrush. 

So this week, I drew in a big breath, sat down with my hair cuttin' scissors (real ones this time) and attempted to cut The Caterpillar's hair - myself.  I cut about two inches off the long piece in the very back (she had some weird, Fish Tail Mullet Thing going on back there) and I gave her some long layers and tapered sides in the front. 

I'm pretty sure that any proper hair stylist who looked at it closely would find problems and scold me immediately, but it's such an improvement over before, I don't care.  It doesn't look like a small rodent gnawed on it and that... as I learned many years ago... is a success.