Tip for moms who cut their kids' hair: don't look away from your work.
#5 has needed a haircut for about two weeks. Despite the Sunday morning rush to get everyone ready for Church, dinner in the slow cooker, lunch in tummies, and a bit of cleaning before hosting the extended family this evening, I thought it would be a good time to take care of the hair. I may have overestimated my delegation skills as a mom.
You see, my nieces and nephew were spending the weekend with us, and nine kids apparently put me over the top. I had assigned out sandwich making, sweeping, and laundering Niece 3's peed-in skirt and shoes so they would be clean and mostly dry before heading to Church in 71 minutes. I had done a pretty good job with the haircut to this point. I set down the clippers to check my work. As I ran my fingers through #5's hair, I noticed a chunk near the front that had eluded the cut. As I reached for the clippers, I looked up to see who was crying or maybe to yell at someone. I don't remember. It's all a blur now. While still dealing with said blur, I set the clippers to his head, and noticed they were tugging against my efforts. Returning my attention to the work at hand, I discovered that the clipper length guide was no longer attached and I had shaved a two-inch-long rectangle down to the scalp. My girls gasped. #5 started crying. The rest of the children came running when they heard #s 1 and 4 trying to reassure him that it didn't look that bad. I considered buzzing the rest of his hair, and then remembered that his school uniform policy prohibits such a cut. I accepted that he would just have to wear my mistake until it grows out.
So I gave up and just put away all the hair cutting tools. As his sisters consoled my tearful boy, I realized he was crying from pain, as he had no idea yet what his hair looked like. Those clippers had really tugged at his hair! So I rubbed his scalp, blew the hairs off his face and neck, and sent him to the shower to rinse. When he was done with his shower, he came to tell me that he actually likes this haircut. "It's really unique!" he said. I'm glad he likes it. I'm also glad Nephew loaned #5 the Lego tie for Church, as it helped to distract from his bald patch--maybe.
How ironic that my only child to never cut his own hair had it ruined by the family hairstylist. For the record, though, after taking #5's picture, I remembered that I had skipped the last part of the cut where I clean up the front. So yes, I shortened those weird, long hairs on his forehead.