Honie Briggs


An electric hair clipper is a dangerous tool best left in the hands of a professional. I know this because I once experienced the devastating destruction of a Norelco power groomer with a number three blade. Actually my sister experienced it, I just inflicted it. I had seen my father use it many times to groom each of my brothers and had even received my own not-so-stylish hair-do, ONCE. So I was certain I could wield the thing well enough to trim my sister’s bangs. We went into the bathroom and she perched herself on the vanity. I plugged in the clipper and combed her hair down over her eyes. I adjusted her head so that I could trim a straight line and proceeded to carefully move across her face. Done! In just a few minutes I had masterfully operated my first power tool ever and was pleased with my skill. That is until my sister turned to look in the mirror to admire my handy work. She began to scream. I had not only trimmed her bangs but also completely removed her eyebrows!

For all of the women who have endured their sister’s not-so-skillful use of everything from beauty products to the family car, this post is for you. My own sisters, the ones I grew up with, the one who married my brother, the ones who survived growing up with my husband, and the ones who I have been lucky enough to meet out in the world, have endured my attitude, my low tolerance for adult beverages, my annoying use of adverbs, and sometimes even my neglect. To them I say, forgive me. I hope they all know how much I love them. The last page of Summoning The Strength was written for them and my whole heart went into choosing just the right words to convey my own experience, struggle, and triumph.

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