“Why?! Why would you DO that?!”
I froze mid-slurp, listening to the anguished cry emanating from the bathroom. My husband’s voice was a poignant mix of anger and incredulity. The temptation to pretend I hadn’t heard it was great: I had just come home from work and had about 10 minutes to suck down my soup before it was time to leave for Sage’s first Kid Party at the local pool. (My friend Angie, genius that she is, had introduced me to the pool party option. It provides the birthday boy and his guests with an hour of healthy exercise and, more importantly, circumvents the necessity for any housecleaning or game-planning.) Sage had had family parties before, but this (his fifth birthday) would be the first one with kid guests.
I felt I should probably go to the aid of my beleaguered husband, but I rationalized that Paul was perfectly capable of handling the situation, being a grown man and all, and that my presence really wasn’t necessary.
Guilt salted my soup, though, and worry about what exactly Sage had done. I’m generally a paranoid person and had envisioned a thousand things that could go wrong—the guests not showing up, the pool being closed unexpectedly, somebody drowning on my watch, etc.—but none of these horrible imaginings involved disaster striking BEFORE the party. I had to know what had happened.
Sighing, I put down my spoon and trudged to the bathroom. Sage was standing on his stool, kitchen scissors in one hand and a comb in the other, working on a batch of fat tears. It took me a moment to process what he had done, but then I realized he’d cut his own hair and now looked like a hipster on meth.
“I just wanted to look handsome for my party!” he wailed.
Paul and I exchanged glances. I was full of potential commentary and clearly so was he, but we realized that we would be the World’s Worst Parents if we sent our son to a major milestone in his childhood while blasting him with recriminations. So we bundled him and his party supplies off to the pool where, I’m pleased to report, all the guests had braved bad weather and a cold epidemic to be there.
There were a couple of potential disasters; among them, I realized that I’d remembered everything but candles and, more importantly, something with which to cut the cake. Fortunately, the kids were willing to overlook any potential delays in their cake eating, and a plastic butter knife foraged from the pool office saved the day. Paul also revealed later that Sage had thrown up in the locker room while they were changing into their swimsuits, a fact I found a little horrifying.
“He was fine after that,” Paul remarked nonchalantly. “It was probably all the excitement.”
So, despite the odds, Sage’s first Kid Party was a success. I’m pleased to report that a dedicated stylist salvaged his hair to the extent that his look went from Hipster on Meth to Monk Who Had Second Thoughts Before His Tonsure Was Complete. Fortunately, Sage is cute enough (if I do say so myself) to pull off that look, although I won’t be attempting to deliberately re-create it when his hair finally grows out.
And in the Great Scheme of Horrible Things A Five-Year-Old Can Do With A Pair Of Scissors, this was low on the Disaster-O-Meter, so I’ll count my blessings and wait patiently for the regrowth.
The Hair Cut
“Why?! Why would you DO that?!”