Not my Mother

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I was maybe 8 or 9 years old when this all happened.
I remember the incident very well, because of its bizarre nature.

It was normal for me to go to the hairdresser alone.
The hairdressers in town knew me, my mother and actually our whole family.

I always went to the same salon and never had any problems.

Every few weeks I would go for a trim, sometimes more if my hair was getting too long.

So off I went as usual, my brown hair reaching to my waist and I had braided it in a thick braid like usual.

A woman spoke to me on the street.
“Oh my god, how can you have such long hair, you really need to cut it.” She said, and tried to grab my braid without even asking.

“I don’t have to, I like it long,” I replied, stepping to the side, so she couldn’t get a hold of my braid.

“But you have to, no boy should have hair that long.”, the woman stubbornly added.

“Miss, I don’t know you and you can clearly see that I am not a boy, would you please leave me alone?” I asked, a bit annoyed, but tried to be friendly and just walked on.

She looked at me indignantly as I just walked away.

When I got to the barber shop it wasn’t busy, so the woman at the front desk told me to sit straight in one of the barber chairs and wait for the hairdresser.

Normally this would be Henry, the hairdresser who knows me best, but instead Jessica came.

Jessica started two weeks ago, and although she was good, she often made minor and simple mistakes that someone else had to fix instead.

She held my braid up as she wrapped the cape around me, almost tying it a little too tight.

“Well? What are we doing today?” she asked, looking at me in the mirror.

Before I could say anything, a familiar voice spoke up.

The woman, from earlier, had followed me and was now standing next to the hairdresser.

“Something short, that hair is way too long for a boy,” she said to Jessica.

“What do you have in mind for your son?” Jessica asked now speaking to the woman.

“You’ve got to be kidding me.” I thought.

“That’s not my mother, and I’m not a boy,” I said loudly.

“He’s always cracking jokes and wants to be a girl, but I’m getting sick of it, so the hair is finally coming off,” the woman replied immediately.

“You heard your mom, that hair of yours is coming down. Whether you like it or not,” Jessica said, holding me in the chair.

She took a belt and tied me to the chair, so I couldn’t get up.

Jessica grabbed a pair of scissors from the shelf in her left hand and pulled my braid back tightly with her right.

“Say goodbye to your braid,” she announced, positioning the scissors and started cutting, the snip of the scissors echoing in my ears.

It couldn’t have lasted more than two or three minutes, as Jessica dropped my braid in my lap. “Here you go.” She said. “This is a reminder of what you looked like before. Consider yourself a real man from now on.

I didn’t know if I should cry or not. It wasn’t what I was expecting at all. Jessica took some clippers and put one of the attachments on it. “Now the hair is really coming off.” She said, setting the clippers down on my forehead.

She pulled them over my head from front to back. Without any delay she drove the Clippers over my head, she didn’t miss a spot. Finally, she said, “Maybe I should shave the back too. I don’t know. What do you think?” she asked the woman.

She just nodded and said: “Go ahead, the shorter, the better.”.

Jessica pointed to a spot above my left ear, and the woman nodded in agreement.
She then spread white foam on my head, covering the sides and neck with it.

“Hold still now, I don’t want to cut you.” she ordered, pulling back a razor just above my ear.

She shaved off the last stubble and then said, “Done.”

The woman took my cut braid out of my lap, wrapped a band around the end, and put it in her purse.

“Looks good, just right for a boy.” She said, and I burst into tears.

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