I’ve long been of the opinion that when you do something for others you should keep it to yourself. Almost as if talking about it cancels it out. I’ve been thinking about it, and decided that charities need to be talked about, so that others might consider them as well. So what I want to write about tonight is getting my hair cut last week.

I know. Doesn’t sound like much of a topic. We all get our hair cut at some point. It’s a routine thing. Except when it’s not.

Several years ago I decided to grow my very short hair out specifically so I could donate it to Locks of Love. It grows fast, but I will admit that after it hits midback length it doesn’t seem so zippy. It’s extremely thick, though fine, and tangles easily when static electricity is involved. As it gets longer and longer it gets harder to manage, and gets pulled out from everything from running my fingers through it to washing it. Washing it became a real problem. Not only did it come out, it went down the drain. To the tune of two plumber visits to declog. Still, no matter how much trouble it got to be, I kept telling myself that if it would help sick children I could certainly handle the pain in the neck aspect. I was really, really glad to get it cut when the time came, though.

It wasn’t easy to find a place where I wanted to donate it. A major salon chain wanted almost $40. To cut off a ponytail? I think not. I ended up at SuperCuts. They told me they did it, but theirs goes to Ronald McDonald House. I was fine with that. It has a great, well known reputation. So I got a long, long ponytail cut off and donated it. It felt great. Both to get rid of what felt like a wool cape on my back or a headache inducing heavy ponytail that eventually graduated to a bun that was like wearing a baseball on the back of my head, and to know I’d helped a suffering child feel a little better.

And then I did it again.

I got the second ponytail cut off and donated last Wednesday. By coincidence the wonderful stylist who managed to hack her way through the thick rope of it and leave me with a perfect little short bob was a cancer survivor. She just mentioned it as part of our conversation, but it dovetailed beautifully with why I was there. She said she’s seen some of the wigs that are made for the children who have lost their hair, and that they’re really nice. One little girl wanted pigtails and was thrilled with her new hair. I said, “Give them whatever they want.” And she said, “That’s right.”

To be a small part of something like that in such a simple and relatively easy way is an honor. I’ll think of the anonymous children I’ve helped and be very happy to be a part of something so worthy. Anyone who can grow out their hair, keep it in good condition, then get a simple haircut that’s not so simple at all can choose to make a sick child’s life a little easier and happier. It’s so worth the effort and won’t cost more than the reasonable price of a SuperCuts haircut, because they take care of sending the donations at the salons. The cool part is that Ronald McDonald is everywhere, and every time I see his goofy face I smile back at him. I never thought I’d share a private smile with Ronald McDonald, but it’s a privilege to do so.

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