Eyes wide shut

Monday, March 28, 2011
As parents, we hear it all the time. "Don't turn your back for a second. Anything can happen in the split second that you're not looking."

It really takes only a second for something to happen. Falling out of a highchair, touching a hot oven, pulling a heavy object. All of which can cause serious injury and sometimes can be fatal.

Last week, I had one of those "turn your back" moments. And although it was nothing close to fatal, it still served as a wake-up call for me, reminding me to keep my eyes wide open. Before you start thinking that I left my children how unattended, let me explain.

Harper was taking a bath, happily splashing away as I flitted in and out of the bathroom. After I helped her wash her hair, I set her up with her bath toys. She was playing contentedly. Or so I thought. After about 2 minutes, she asked me to turn to look at what she had done. I figured it was going to be a "smoothie". She adds a little bit of her bath wash to a cup full of water and voila! A smoothie for Mommy.

As I turned to look, I saw it immediately. I comb twisted around her hair. Her long bangs were twisted up to her scalp. I tried to muffle a scream. I went into panic mode. I didn't have to feel it to know that it was twisted so tightly that I feared the only option was to cut her hair. The comb wouldn't budge. There was no leeway for the hair.

I put conditioner on it and tried to soak it in the water to loosen it from the deathly grips of the comb. Not moving. I tried unraveling it strand by strand, but that was neither practical nor possible. We were both near tears. She had just had her hair trimmed a week prior and was so proud of her haircut. I didn't have the heart to tell her that they only way to get the comb out of her hair was to cut it.
The evidence

How could I possibly cut the comb out without totally wreaking havoc on her bangs? I envisioned spiky, punk-like bangs reminiscent of rockers from the 80's. But I had to do it. I had no other choice. I reached for the scissors and held my breath as I cut the comb from her hair. I feared super-short, choppy bangs. We were lucky. This time. Her bangs turned out fine. They are long enough to pull back, and if we don't, they don't look ridiculous. They are actually cute, side-swept bangs.

We got lucky. This time.

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