Saturday, June 22, 2013

The long and short of it....

I was around 6 when I got my first pixie cut.

And it hasn't been much longer ever since.  If there is a variation of a pixie cut, I have had it.  Just the other day, I paid my amazing hairdresser, Amy, a visit like I do every 5 or six weeks and she gave me this sassy little number.

I am in love. It makes me feel less like a yoga pants wearing mom and more like an edgy, stylish super star.  Gotta love a style that can give you that feeling.  Wanna be the sexist feeling mom at story-hour?  Go get yer hair did.

Over the last 25+  years, my short hair has become a part of me, kind of my trademark.  I am very secure in my own identity, and always have been. I am confident in my womanhood and always have been - even at six I was proud to be a girl and I never let it get to me when the other kids made comments about my hairstyle or when other (not very observant) adults would mention how "handsome" my parents' "three sons" were.  I liked my hair.  I loved my hair.  My hair suited - and still suits - me.

When I saw this little girl on Good Morning America one morning, I couldn't shake her and her amazing mommy from my mind.

Jackie Morgan MacDougall had recently written a very moving blog post (click here to read it) about her six year old daughter, Lucy, who had long beautiful hair down her back, and she asked her mom if she could chop it all off for a spikey "fauxhawk" style 'do. Jackie made Lucy wait awhile so that she was sure that she really wanted to make such a drastic change and while it grew long enough for a Locks of love donation - and seeming so that she could do some soul searching for herself.  She didn't want her daughter to be made fun of, to be mistaken for a boy, for people to question what type of a mother she is for letting her baby girl get "a boy's haircut."  

Jackie realized that she was letting her own appearance issues cloud her parenting decisions.  Here she was, raising a daughter, telling Lucy everyday that she was loved and that it didn't matter what others thought of her if she loved herself - and here she was, in the next breath, telling her that she couldn't get her hair cut a certain way because Jackie herself was worried about what other people would think. To quote her blog, Jackie so eloquently puts it like this: "Yes, kids might tease her… you know it happens. But the only thing worse than that is teaching her that she should make choices in life solely based on how other people (not even people she cares about) might perceive them."

How powerful is THAT revelation?!

So you know what? Lucy got her hair cut.  SHORT.  And I don't know about you, but I think she is ROCKING it.  The little pixie-cut-clad-six-year-old-Allison inside of my is high-fiving little Lucy for being so amazing.

At at the same time, the 31-year-old-mom-of-two-long-haired-beauties-Allison is saying, "Well?! What would I do if Hayden or Carly asked for a mega short cut?!?!"

Because the truth is this: like Jackie, I am living vicariously through my girls and their long, gorgeous locks. I never had them myself, and I love braiding and french braiding and trying new things. (Which, prior to Hayden, I had no clue how to do.  Thank goodness for Pinterest and YouTube.) And, like Lucy, I prefer my own hair short - even at age 6 - and I don't really care if anyone else likes it.  I have faced those bullies who have nothing better to do than bother me about my hair.  I have been called a "he" by adults. And I LIVED. No only did I live, but I thrived - because I was taught that what is IN your head, and more importantly what is in your heart, is much more important than what is ON your head.

I like to think that my answer would reflect that truth, and I hope that it would help my daughter grow into a confident, self-aware, beautiful (inside and out) young woman. And if that meant parting with some hair, so be it.  It's just hair. Hair grows back.

Unless you are like me and you get a thrill from the sound of the clippers. LOL

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