Why I paid $80 for a lock of my son’s hair
Sixteen-and-a-half years ago, I gave birth to my 1st child, a blond-haired, blue-eyed boy named Andrew. When he was born, he had the typical blue eyes that newborns often have but that I thought would eventually turn to brown as he got older.
Well, fast forward to his 1st birthday, he continued to have the most piercing blue eyes that often made me question how in the world did 2 brown-eyed parents make a blue-eyed baby (the genetic lottery, of course!)
So, okay he’s got blue eyes…but what about his hair…he was bald at a year old!
“Where is his hair???” I exasperatedly asked his day care teacher one day.
“Mom,” she said, “your son isn’t bald…that’s blond hair you are not seeing, …he has BLOND HAIR.”
Whoa! Now wait a minute! It just barely sunk in that my son had blue eyes, but now you are telling me that he has BLOND HAIR? (Again, how in the world did 2 brown-haired parents make a blond-haired baby (ok, the genetic lottery again, you dummy!)
So, I inspected his little tiny blond head closer…and sure enough, there was hair there… and it was blond!
As the years went on, his blond hair remained blond, in fact so blond, people couldn’t believe he was my son. He was a towhead, a blue-eyed towhead. I proudly showed him off and always laughed when people kept saying his hair was so blond, unlike mine.
And then the most amazing thing happened.
His hair got curly!
So now I’m really, really excited! He had all the things I didn’t have: blue eyes, blond hair…and now it was curly. I looked at myself in the mirror at my boring brown eyes, mundane stick straight brown hair usually tied up in my signature messy bun ….and smiled. I kind of liked him being different than me. It made him special.
As he grew up and his hair got curlier and curlier and thicker and thicker, I was happy for him and proud of myself for unintentionally making a being that was so opposite of myself. I marveled at that. It was my super-power: I make humans that look nothing like myself, LOL.
He hated his blond hair of course. During summer vacation, I would spray hair lightener on his head, telling him it was “conditioner” – I wanted him to return to school in the fall with hair blonder than when he left in the spring. It did the trick until he got older and he realized what I was doing and would run away every time he saw me approaching with the bottle.
(Note to you: do NOT spray hair lightener on your brown-haired children like I did with my middle child, unless you want them to have orange hair…click here to read up on that... whoopsie!)
One day on a recent trip to the barber with him, I had a brilliant idea.
“Hey, I have a question,” I asked him, “can I have a lock of your hair before you cut it?”
He looked at me like I was bat-sh*t crazy (and that’s because I AM CRAZY) and stared me right in the eye and said:
“For $80 bucks you can have it.”
Sounded like a bribe to me. Sounded like he needed money for a video game. Sounded like he was using his special features to get something he wanted to give me something that I wanted. That little stinker…he had me.
…So after the barber, he disappeared into his room to play his new video game and I disappeared into my room,… I was $80 poorer, but so much richer....And neither of us mentioned it ever again.