I broke down and did it…….yeah, that’s right.
Well, after 7 whole months, I finally got a haircut! I hadn’t been back for a trim since July, about 4 weeks before we said goodbye to our son, so needless to say, my hair was getting long. It was a mess and needed shaping up so badly!!
I remember very well being there back in July and discussing how excited we were to meet our son in just a few more weeks. I was pretty large at that point and the heartburn had really set in, but I was so excited that the end was in sight.
I planned that haircut the week leading up to my first baby shower. I figured I had better get my hair cut then, because there wouldn’t be too much time for things like that after Andrew was with us. I also wanted to look nice for the shower! 🙂
A couple of months after loosing Andrew, I needed a haircut, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. I just couldn’t bring myself to tell my stylist about our tragic loss. It was all too fresh and I just couldn’t build up the energy to deal with calling her to schedule the appointment. I knew she would ask about our little boy, and I just didn’t have it in me to explain.
My hair has been getting quite long, which may work for some people, but just doesn’t look as good on me. The longer it gets, the more weighed down it is and unhealthy it looks….at least that’s what I think. Although it makes for a good ponytail, which is nice when training for a 10k, I just had to do it. I couldn’t stand it anymore!
So, I called up my salon and asked to schedule an appointment with my stylist. It’s always hit or miss as far as who answers the phone, but my stylist answered this time. I told her who I was and asked if she could fit me in tonight. Her first question was, “So how’s the baby?”
Gee, she didn’t even let me wait to tell her in person! I felt like a blubbering idiot trying to answer her. I honestly haven’t been in that many situations where I am presented with the opportunity to share about our loss, so I am still working on my “elevator conversation,” as a fellow grieving mother explains it. The vast majority of the people I interact with either know about our loss or have absolutely no reason to assume I have a child, and therefore don’t ask. So, I haven’t had a whole lot of practice with this.
I think my response went something like this, “Well, about that. I was actually planning to tell you when I saw you. We lost our son just a week before his due date. He would be six months now.”
Whenever I do share about our loss, I’m always a little anxious about how the person will respond, because the response can either go one of two ways. In my limited experience, the person can either respond well or very very poorly. There doesn’t seem to be an in between. Although almost all have good intentions, good intentions don’t mean that words (or lack thereof for that matter) aren’t hurtful. That’s another post in and of itself though.
My stylist responded really well, which was a blessing. She said, “I’m so sorry.”
Shortly after, she asked about whether there were any complications. I briefly explained that there really weren’t and that it came as a total shock. She then repeated, “I’m so so sorry.”
I really appreciated her simple, yet thoughtful response. I didn’t need a long and drawn out plea of sympathy from her. I honestly don’t know her that well, so that probably would have been awkward. But, I appreciated that she recognized how difficult our loss was and even asked a few simple questions about it.
So, after I got off work, I headed on over to my appointment. I was glad I was able to tell her our news over the phone after all, so I didn’t have to break the news in the middle of the busy salon. As she washed my hair, she asked me how I was holding up. She asked me if I had good days and bad days. She asked about whether I actually delivered him and whether they were able to determine the cause of his death.
Again, a very thoughtful conversation. I explained that we were doing really well, but that yes, we did have our good and bad days. I told her that slowly the good days are starting to outweigh the bad days, but that it was still difficult. She asked us a couple other questions about trying to conceive again.
And for the record, we did talk about other things. She shared about purchasing a new home and she told about her new boyfriend when I asked her if she had any Valentine’s Day plans. It was just a great conversation all around. Maybe that’s why she ended up chopping 4 inches in the process!! No, in all seriousness, I asked her to go short, so it was no surprise. 🙂
So, after way too much detail about a simple haircut, I’m just so glad to have jumped over this hurdle. It was honestly something I was dreading for a while, and then in recent months just never made the time to do. I’m sort of glad I waited so long though – I was ready today, and I’m not sure I would have been ready right after Andrew had died. I am slowly learning what my heart and emotions can and can not handle, and am trying to make sure I take that into consideration before putting myself in certain situations. It’s been a good lesson for me.