I've been wanting to get it cut for some time. I quite like having it long (it keeps my neck warm) and it doesn't require much maintenance, but at the point where it's trailing in my food and the washing up bowl, it's frankly just annoying. It's also so thin that most hair ties don't grip it well, so tying it up tends to fail and fall out, which is a pain for things like dance classes. So I was thinking of getting a few inches taken off, nothing too drastic.
However, there were complications. For a start, most hairdressers I've found will only take a maximum of 1-2 inches off and still count it as a trim, which means you'll pay about £20 or more for something that will barely get rid of the split ends, let alone make any real difference to the length. So, I'd been considering taking a pair of scissors to it myself, and then letting a hairdresser tidy it up.
Then another issue cropped up. Someone suggested to me that long hair could be very useful for wig-making for cancer patients. This really appealed to me, partly because of my hatred of things going to waste that could possibly be useful, and also because it just generally seemed like a Nice Thing to do. So, I looked into it. Turns out that Cancer Research will take hair (and even pay a small amount for it), but that it's unlikely to be used for cancer patients, due to the fact it takes too long to make a wig and because they get a free synthetic one on the NHS -- they could have to pay up to £2000 for a real-hair one, which suddenly makes it feel a bit less like charity. However, there is a charity called the Little Princess Trust that takes hair and fully funds the making of wigs for children who have lost their hair through illness. This sounds like a more worthy cause to me -- having a wig is not really necessary for anyone, but children are more likely to be upset by feeling different than adults are, and their peers are likely to be more cruel and non-understanding than adults in my experience. So, this seemed even more like a Good Thing. However, whereas the adult wigs require 6 inches of hair, the children's wigs require 10-12 inches. Which is quite a lot more than I was planning to cut off.
I think I'll still do it. I really want to now I've looked into it, and my hair is really driving me crazy. And yet, I still feel a little funny about it. It won't even change the look of my hair much -- it's so long that taking 12 inches off will still leave it just about on the shoulders, it's not like I'm shaving it all off. And given how fast it grows, it'll probably be back to being long again in a month or two. So why am I hesitating? Is it just because of a fear of change, or messing it up? I think part of it is just a need for a little encouragement. My hair is generally the only part of my appearance that anyone ever compliments me on -- people often come up to me and say how much they love my hair (which seems a little weird to me, it's not that great and it's full of split ends), including a woman in a pub just the other day spontaneously coming up and telling me how lovely long hair was and that I shouldn't cut it. I guess that's just vanity, but it does make it just that little bit harder to go through with it when everyone's telling me not to.
So, I thought I'd run this past people. Most people are unlikely to talk someone out of doing anything for charity no matter how stupid it is, but I thought I'd like to at least explain why I'm doing it, and see if people agree. And of course ask that people don't laugh at me if I end up with uneven hair for a bit :-)