We were waiting for my hair appointment to dye my hair purple, when you walked up alone to the receptionist and said, “I would like pink hair.” You took her and us by surprised, she looked at us, laughing and said, “Is she serious?” Your dad and I looked at each other. We both knew you were, but this was something we had not talked about. Earrings we voted no on until you understood a little better how much it hurt, but hair was just hair right?
We told her that we would like an estimate and if they could squeeze you in that it was okay with us. You are only 3 ½ but you sat for the full four hour appointment, waiting patiently for your pink hair. You sat quietly as she put the toner and very seriously picked out the shade of pink toner you wanted. You entertained us and them with stories that we took turns telling - Goldilocks, the “5” little pigs, the princess dragon, until my hair finally finished.
When we left you could not stop talking about your hair, and when we told you the rules of taking care of pink hair, you listened and remembered. “Don’t put shampoo in my hair Mommy. The pink will come out then.” But even with you following the directions, the pink quickly faded, and you informed me that you needed more pink.
So we did, and we even made it pinker.
This time a few people said a few disapproving comments. “I don’t think it’s right that you are letting her dye her hair pink.”
I thought about it. And here’s what I decided.
As a mom, it’s not my job to control what you are allowed to do with your body. It’s true. I made your body. I marvel at how strong you are and how big you are getting. I love watching you grow up, and it’s weird thinking that you were once my helpless little baby. I was a little sad watching your hair turn its lovely shade a blonde to pink.
But the thing is, my goal is to help you love your body and see it for the amazing tool that it is. It can do incredible things. I want you to not look at it’s imperfections but instead look at how amazing it is. I want you to feel like it fits your unique spirit just right, even if that means pink hair and black dresses every day. I want you to treat it with love and help it be healthy. Eventually when you get a bit older, I want you to be able to deflect the insecurities that the world and the media throws at you about how you should look. The messages are not kind, and I do not want you to absorb them. If I tell you how you should look and dress, I think it will be easier to listen to those messages when I stop or am not around.
Your body is yours - pink hair and all. I hope that’s one thing you always remember.