50 Days of 50: Its going to be alright. DAY 46

5/25/2012   DAY 46  Mafia HairdresserI am a hairdresser who has had the privilege of doing a lot of bride’s hairdos on their big days. When I was a younger I might fret or worry because there can be so much built up tension in the hotel room where the bride and her bridesmaids gathered to get ready. The mother in law would pop in to see if she could steal me away, for just a second for her hair. The flower girls would be pulling and ripping at the wreaths of flowers I had just sewn into their baby fine hair. There’d be multiple calls from the hotel catering manager downstairs saying things like they were out of bagels and could they substitute them with biscuits? And the mother of the bride would be in an overly “helpful” mode by telling the bride, in great detail and in retrospect, they should have chosen the Hilton over the Ambassador, the yellow white was not as pretty as the pearl white on the wedding dress, the flower girls look darling but she wished her other daughters’ kids were still young enough to be flower girls because they could actually behave and, no, biscuits are for poor people and the hotel simply must have bagels or fly them in from somewhere.
By the way, the wedding that I just mentioned was a real event and I was a seasoned hairdresser at this point. I did not worry the night before if the bride was going to flip out by having a panic attack or throw me a curve ball by deciding to wear her hair down after I had already done three trials where her hair was pulled up. I was ready for anything because I had the hair skills needed and I knew that whatever mishap or non-planned event happened on her day that I was equipped to love her through it. I see it as my job to help bring the focus back to bride (in many ways) that this was about getting married to that guy whom she won’t even see for another 3 hours. I actually took the phone out of the mother’s hands and said into the phone, “Biscuits are fine.” And then I hung up the phone and looked straight into the mother’s eyes and said, “Get out.” The rest of the day was immediately filled with laughter from the bride and bridesmaids, and mom even came up to me later and said, “I honestly don’t know who I was a while ago. I just wanted everything to be perfect.” And you know what? It was.
I had a point here. But the story part is too funny, right? Some of you married women, bridesmaids and former grooms want to chime right in and tell your story too, I’m sure. Here’s another one: My friend Deb (who happens to be my 3pm client today when I go to work) was getting married to great man, Larry. Deb is and always was a fine business woman. She was exacting with her scheduling of clients. She was fair. And she was professional. A real hard worker. So when it came time to get married, she managed it like it was a new business and she organized the details and schedules of the flowers, caterers, rabbi, the signings, the hairdresser, the photographer, the band and so forth. This woman now has twins, works full time and manages her household and I cannot hold a candle to her when it comes to organization.
I was in the bridal room of the hotel doing Deb’s hair. I was nearing completion of the final production of pins and spray to make her pulled back hair look like a chic Grace Kelly do as Deb was overseeing the final details with her bridesmaids. There were calls and deliveries from the hotel. And calls from groomsmen concerning the photographer waiting for all of us downstairs. Deb personal attention to all of the input and her response was like a robot-octopus, each tentacle doing its task with ease and elegance. And then the phone call came in from her groom to-be. Larry called to say that his mother was having chest pain and was being rushed to the hospital. Jewish wedding: right?!
This is the part when Deb got to have her moment. The moment every bride is entitled to. The moment when you get to throw the hair brush at the hairdresser for absolutely no reason other than he should not have listened to the bride when she begged him to cut bangs on her on her big day. The pressure has to be released and there will be blood. And, in the end, everyone will be happy, and the bride and groom will be one. Deb’s moment came in the form of worrying about Larry. She went into co-dependent mode and began to slow up the schedule. She became irrational and began to bark orders at flower delivery guys who came into the room. She began to care less and less about her own hair and more about the “what if’s” such as, was Larry’s mother going to die on her wedding? Was this a sign? Every second she wanted to call Larry to see if he was okay. Needless to say, her makeup was getting ruined and that is when I had to put my foot down.
I don’t remember how I said it, but I told Deb, “Hey, we have a show to put on here. The things that are not in our control will have to be taken care of the people who need to step up to the plate. It’s not our problem. Now put on the god damn veil and let’s get those outdoor pictures done so you can get married!”
In know! I sound like such a scary control freak but I don’t usually have to do my tough-love act at weddings. Just these two. But the fact of the matter is both wedding came off without a hitch. Deb’s mother-in-law was fine and she got to hear the whole ceremony over the phone. Each and every small thing that happened that day was part of what was memorable and perfect in its own way: both the things that were planned and those that were not.
My point, finally, is that’s it’s all right. It’s always going to be alright. You’ve done the research. You’ve made plans. You’ve gone through the motions. So when the time comes to let your project become a reality, you’ve got to let it go. But only brides get to use a get-out-jail card free.

Mafia Hairdresser



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