I let my 12 year old daughter get blue hair today. More of a turquois really.
And my 13 year old went with purple.
When they first brought up the notion of coloring their hair several months ago, I tabled the idea with a, “We’ll see.”
They were both pleasantly surprised that I didn’t immediately say no way, so they kept casually bringing it up here and there.
I tried to think of a good reason not to do it.
There are no school rules against it. It doesn’t require any additional maintenance. They were supplementing the cost of it.
Yet, I was having a hard time wrapping my head around it, mainly because there is no way my parents would have allowed it. My father blew his gasket when I double pierced my ear in 11th grade, so blue hair would never be an option.
When I thought about it, there were only two reasons not to do it. It meant I had to relinquish control over their appearance, and it is something I would never have done at their age.
Both seemed like pretty selfish and silly reasons.
So, I finally made the appointment, and we told our hip colorist that we wanted the tips done, and my daughters walked out with a lot of blue and purple hair. Whoops.
And they couldn’t be happier.
But even more interesting, was every woman in the place stopped to tell me that I was a good mom for letting them do this.
It seemed odd to me, until one older mom remarked: “Young people have so little say over their lives, and when we give them a bit, we lend some balance to the relationship. Trust me, you are smart to let them do this.”
So, on the drive home when the girls were profusely thanking me, I told them this: “Remember that you thought I was going to say no, we discussed it, and then we came to a solution together. Before you ever go off and do something stupid, remember we can always talk about it first — even if you think I’ll say no. Give me the same chance I gave you.”
They nodded their heads and flipped their hair, and it warmed my heart to see them so happy because of such a small thing, knowing that we will probably have to tackle something bigger tomorrow.
I don’t think I’m a good mom because I let my girls turn their hair a different color; but, I do think I got parenting right today by listening to my kids and giving them some consideration on something that was important to them.
Today I said yes because I feel certain there will be a lot of no’s in the future.
And as the saying goes, hair today, gone tomorrow.