Sunday, November 2, 2008

The Golden Moments of Motherhood

Recently my son has been insisting that we cut his hair in a mohawk.  He has been coming home from school with his hair all gooped up in mohawk fashion - the best he could manage with his short hair cut.  

When I combed his hair before school he started arguing with me that he wanted it mohawk style.  What the heck!!  I thought that arguing about hair was limited to my daughters only!  I stand corrected.

So I recently volunteered in my sons class at school and discovered that several boys in his grade had their hair cut full blown mohawk style.  Oh dear.  This is not going to be easy to talk my son out of this one.

But the good Lord was with me one morning.  As I was combing my sons hair before school, and the old argument came up again - I took a deep breath. 

"Son, have you ever seen people who dress really different or strange before?  Have you seen people who have their bodies pierced in weird and painful places?"  "Yes" he replied.  
"Remember the guy we saw with the really BIG mohawk, walking by us once?" 
"Well, what did you think when you saw those people?"
"That guy had a really BIG mohawk mom!"
"Yes, you noticed the mohawk and the way they were dressed first.  Son, I am afraid that if you styled your hair in a big mohawk, people might miss the real you."

I continued to tell him that I was afraid if he made a big statement with his looks that people would say, "hey, there's the kid with the mohawk"  instead of  "hey, there's the guy that is really nice or smart or funny". I told him that God doesn't want him to get attention that way, that He wants people to notice him for him and not his hair.

And then my friends - the moment happened.  That connection! - when you see the light bulb turn on in those big blue eyes.  HE GOT IT!  "Okay mom" was his reply as he shrugged his shoulders and off he went.  

He has never asked for a mohawk since.

I am sure it won't always be this easy.  But for now, I will celebrate the little successes as I try to help this little boy become a man.


Teresa said...

That was a fantastic story Melissa...I will store that one away for future reference.:)
I'm enjoying your blog BTW.

Anonymous said...

that was a nice story, but sometimes the smartest most wonderful people are the ones that are noticed for their appearence before people get to know them.

Megan said...

I think as mothers it is our responsibility to "teach" our children through moments like these. I am sure this will be one of many "teaching' moments you will encounter with Nathan. Good for you for making this a positive one done in a kind and loving way.

Melissa said...

anonymous - please.

Anonymous said...

Did you ever think about asking your son WHY he wanted a mohawk?

Laurel said...

Ah, bravo! I love the clarity of teaching in this story. For those of us trying to teach our children to honor their bodies and not toy with them, that is the real idea behind it all--That the real them will shine through first.

When I taught communications, I learned that 90% of what we communicate is unspoken. 90%! I think the argument that "people should not judge by appearances" is faulty. We humans are hardwired to interpret unspoken communication, the first of which is appearance. Our kids need to be aware that they are "speaking" without saying a word. A great parent asks: "What is it that you want to say to people?"

Big, fat gold star for you, Mom!

jenn of hair said...

That was inspired! I loved how you put that to him. It can be so hard sometimes to know how to help our children remember how special they are. Keep it up! I have 4 boys (9 yrs-18 mos) and love to read about moms who understand the importance of teaching our boys to be MEN. Hair is not's who they are that is. Thank you.

Chelsea said...

anonymous, really. Stop commenting and move on. and to the other anonymous, it's obvious that he wanted one because some of the boys in his class have them.

The Unlikely Homeschooler said...

I too will be storing that away. I was amazed when my son was in first grade that a little boy in his class had a big mohawk and huge fake tattoo across his can't tell me in first grade that's his own style! I applaud your response to your son. You did not bash his ideas, instead you asked him questions about what message he wished to send, etc.

lundgrenville said...

Hey Melissa-

Hillarious! Im glad you waited for the spirit to guide you. Sounds like it was the right moment. He obviously loves his mama! :)
Elections are tomorrow....I am praying for good things to happen.

Jenson Family said...

Wow - I'll have to admit that your blog has been the source of a LOT of drama lately! Wow - 106 comments on that "This is me" post! I think that's a record. Hilarious. I totally got screwed by a "friend" on my blog the other day, in a post entitled "How 'informed' are the voters?" You will have to check it out! So you have given me a lot of inspiration and courage with your blog and how you stand all of the craziness of comments you sometimes (most of the time, really) receive! xoxo

Beth said...

Nicely handled. :)

Linnea said...

I was just praying for wisdom as a mother this morning. That was an awesome example!

Robyn said...

Great story. Thanks for sharing it! Sometimes we moms struggle to say the right thing in the right way. This is an excellent example!

Heather C. said...

Hooray for you! I love that you taught your son to be his own person without having to be unique like everybody else :) Anonymous, it's not about the hair, it's about developing a pattern of wisely considered decisions. She helped him to think about it and understand the outcome. And really, of course we all know that people can look different or even bizarre and be fabulous people but I think most of us also understand the immaturity level and insecurity of those who try to scream "Look at me!" through the way they look. What does your hair look like Anonymous?

Erin said...

I am so sorry you and your dear family have had to endure such horrible comments. It is appalling that such heartless people exist. I appreciate your strength and courage. Good luck and don't give them the time of day :)

It says a lot about a person who hides behind the "anonymous" title.

The 5 Bickies said...

I loved how your handled the mohawk issue with your son.I am sure something like that will come up in our home and I hope I remember this! Thanks.

WendyLou said...

You are a wise and beautiful Mama. Well played, indeed.