Change is Good!

It would be virtually impossible for me to dislike anything as much as I hate going to a beauty shop. I’m not sure why I have such an aversion, unless it’s because the beautician always seems to be a talker. I don’t like to talk that much when I’m getting a haircut, I just prefer to sit there with my eyes closed, praying the haircut will come out somewhere in the ballpark of what I wanted when I finally got enough courage to venture inside the establishment. Other than that, there is no reason for this beauty shop phobia I have.

It’s so bad that when I get mad at my hair, I cut it myself. That works well for a few years—a curling iron can cover up a multitude of mistakes. So normally about midnight, I’ll start chopping away. It came out so bad about 30 years ago, I looked like I should be on a roller derby team. Kind of like I put a bowl on top of my head and whacked away. I’m not sure exactly how that happened, but after a frantic call to a real beautician the next day, I was back in business. With shorter hair than I wanted and the humiliation of having to explain I cut it myself. I was tempted to say my child had gotten chewing gum stuck in there and I had to cut it out, but I had no child and there wouldn’t have been enough gum in the world to explain that mess away. So, I fessed up. Luckily, she was able to fix it into some semblance of normalcy, but I knew she was dying to laugh herself sick. Since she didn’t, I gave her a good tip. And never went back.

I got much better over the years and have even perfected cutting the back of it, to some extent anyway. The front normally looks pretty durn good for a novice and I can do a halfway good job on the back, thanks to a good mirror system in the bathroom, but it’s no professional job. So, every couple of years I go to a beauty shop. I had a great hairdresser, my husband’s sister. I didn’t mind going to her and getting a haircut and the price was right, free, but she was inconsiderate enough to die. Ed and I had to start searching for someone to replace Barbara, in the hair cutting arena anyway. She was pretty much irreplaceable in all other areas.

He found someone he really likes. The first person he went to, I do believe. I’ve been searching ever since. I had one guy I liked but he moved to the north side of town and I didn’t like him enough to drive 30 miles to get a haircut. I tried using the same person Ed uses, but that didn’t work out. There’s a beauty shop close to our house and I went there. She gave a decent cut but told me she was leaving in a week. Unfortunately, she was the only English-speaking person in the shop besides me, so I couldn’t go back there after she was gone.

This brings us to one day a few years ago. I decided it was time for a cut and to get my hair shaped. In other words, the two-year rotation on haircuts was again upon me. I told her about two inches off and face framed around the front. A wash, cut, and style. I really liked her. She was so gentle during the washing/conditioning that I almost fell asleep. She was Japanese and a tiny, tiny bit hard to understand at times because she spoke so softly, but a very nice lady. And lo and behold, she wasn’t a talker. Woohoo!

After about an hour of her still cutting my hair, I started to get concerned. All I kept hearing was scissors snipping. She was exceptionally thorough. That’s a polite way of saying slow. My arms were going to sleep under the cape. And I need to explain something. If I don’t have my glasses on, I can’t see the mirror, let alone how my hair is shaping up, and there was so much constant snipping, it was a little scary. When I walked in, I could braid my hair if I wanted to. When she finally finished cutting, she asked me what I thought. I dutifully put on my glasses, looked in the mirror, told her it looked good, took my glasses off, and closed my eyes again while she started drying my hair.

I lied. I have been known to tell people that they can go to Hell just as fast for lying as they can for stealing, but I did lie. I think it was okay under those circumstances, because she was nice and gluing all my hair back on was not going to be an option. I didn’t close my eyes to relax; I closed them because looking back at me from the mirror was me—with no hair. That two-inch trim had turned into a full-blown haircut.

So, for 45 minutes more, yes, it really took that long, I kept telling myself (about a bazillion times) “Change is good!” In other words, I started lying to myself also. Because it wasn’t good. Oh, sure, it was a good cut, but it wasn’t what I asked for. And my legs were going numb about then, also. I started tightening and relaxing muscles just to get some circulation back into my body. On top of this disastrous haircut, I sure didn’t want to have paramedics showing up to try and get me out of the chair.

When it was all over, I lied again. Sort of becoming a habit by now, no? I told her it was a good cut, which it was, and that I liked it, which I didn’t. I mean I liked it, sort of, just not on me. I left that part out. And I tipped her good. Because she was nice and really tried. Plus, since this was almost a two-hour adventure, I figured she didn’t make much money every day.

Don’t you just hate that they put mirrors in automobiles? I do. Normally not, but when I got in the car, I had to examine it more closely. Which stressed me out all the way home. I got the “Well, let me see it” comment from the hubby when he got home. This was after I had tried to do something with it. Did I mention she had packed it full of mousse? Which I hate. I wouldn’t let her put any hairspray on it. I told her it was fine and didn’t need any. Another lie, because I felt like I had a hat on, it was so stiff. I’m getting pretty good at that lying thing, huh?

Right about here should be a moral to the story, but there was no upside to this experience. Well, not up to this point. After our company left, I washed my hair. I hated that, by the way, although it certainly took half the time it normally did; but all I kept feeling was my short hair. I dried it, again in about half the time it would normally take. What I ended up with was natural-looking hair, which is my normal look, but drastically shorter than it had been about 5 hours before that.

Okay, here comes the moral of the story. Guess what? My hair looked great. Oh, sure, it was much, much shorter than it had been. But it was a great cut. Probably one of the best I’ve ever had. It swung beautifully, what little there was left to it, and I loved the way it felt. Change is good, after all. Know what did it? What turned it into something I like? It wasn’t the cutting, it was the cleaning.

That got me to thinking. Here I was, lamenting the loss of my hair and what I ended up with was something pretty spectacular, after I was able to wash out all the goop and see what I was left with. Becoming a Christian is a similar experience. Some people say they don’t want to be a Christian because they must give up too much. But when you do, and Father washes all that goop out of your soul, you’re left with something pretty durn special and much better than what you had before. Yep, change is good.

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6 thoughts on “Change is Good!”

  1. Margena, my hair cutting experiences are similar to yours. I do my own except when it gets drastically out of shape. I have to wash out a new hair cut also. I never linked it to my Christian walk however. But you are so right. I feel sorry for those who believe that a Christian is living with out so many things because they had to give so much up. As God washes the goop out of my life, I have given up worry, fear, hate, judge mental attitudes, sadness, depression, loneliness, past baggage and much more! I exchanged all that goop for a joy filled life that still falters but has hope for my future! Way to go Margena! I wish you the best of success telling stories like this one!

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