Tuesday, March 20, 2012

When Bad Hair Happens to Good Kids

I have a ten year old daughter named Rainey.  I'm sorry...I mean, I have a ten AND A HALF year old daughter (apparently the additional 6 months can not & should not be overlooked).  As her mother, I will say that this kid is pretty fantastic.  I think most folks would agree.  For the most part she is funny, sweet, loving and full of joy.  Lots of laughs from this little lady.  At the same time she is one pre-pubescent, full-of-herself, "I need more lip gloss" drama princess (I'm saving the "queen" status for the teen years).  She loves make-up and glam, which is somewhat the opposite of me (despite my Avon Lady personae), so I typically let her do her thing.  Rainey does attend a Catholic school and wears a uniform during the week, much to her disgust, so weekends usually consist of make-overs, pink hair extensions and sequined hats. 

Morning after foam curlers were slept in

Here's the thing....in all of the vanity, primping and glamming, Rainey is attempting to grow her hair out long.  Rainey does not have good hair.  I adore this child and she is beautiful inside and out.  But she has bad hair.  Thin, stringy and about as straight as it could get. It doesn't hold curl more than an hour, can barely stay in a barrette and won't even keep its part.  We have foam & electric curlers, curling irons of every size, and even a straightener to give it some style.  Nothing gives this child the luxurious locks she'd like.  But she does not see this.  "Longer is better" and the greasy-headed, blue-eyeshadowed girl is my child now. 

I do realize that the vanity is now sounding like my own.  I'd truly rather just be that parent that can just let my glitzy ragamuffin child be herself, and for the most part I do.  But I can not help reaching out to get the stringy strands out of her face, chasing her with a brush every morning to attack the nest of whatever that was built in the back of her head overnight, and threatening to cut her hair in her sleep if she doesn't wash it every day.

But do I really care that much?  Does it really matter if she has "bad" hair at ten AND A HALF (or ever, really)?  Maybe my concern is that it reflects on me as a parent?  I am lousy at French braiding, therefore my children will suffer?  Rainey's flat hair doesn't stifle her laughter or make her less loving.  It certainly doesn't make her feel less beautiful inside or out.  The adults in her life care far more about getting her hair cut in layers "to give it more oomf."  Probably time to let it go.  As it is, my sweet drama princess,will indeed become the queen in a few years and my guess is that her hair will be the least of my concerns.  Until then...she can do, or not do, her hair as she likes and I will learn to silence my "beauty advice."  Or, when she's feeling especially glamorous, she'll wear wigs.

1 comment:

  1. She's a doll! And not that it really matters one way or another, but my previously stick straight hair got some waves in it in my teen years and has been that way ever since. I usually straighten it. (And oddly, the right side of my hair goes into almost ringlets if I let it air dry; the left side just gets wavy.)