Monday, January 3, 2011

To Dye For

My beloved Skiffy has the most beautiful head of hair. Thick, dark brown, healthy spiral curls. It is absolutely gorgeous. Of course, like a good rebellious teenager, she hates it. She would love to dye it, bleach it, flat iron it, or otherwise find some way of turning it to straw. This is incredibly painful for me as I am a devout curly girl. (More on that another day, but in short, I don’t use shampoo, sulfate, silicone, etc. in my hair.) You see, my own mother developed an extreme complex within me, a true fear actually; a fear of dyes, bleaches, and hair chemicals in general. She had a horrid habit of ‘doing’ her own hair at home and then paying a visit and a wad of cash to a professional to repair her do from the doing she’d done to it. Her hairdresser once told her she would be lucky if she woke up without all of her hair on her pillow. The result of this hair fear/complex is that I have made a serious commitment to loving my hair, sans chemicals. It is the curse of motherhood that my beloved daughter will not embrace her own fabulous locks as I will her to.
Enter Jerome Russell’s Punky Colours hair dye. Skiffy got $20 for Christmas and has been ‘dyeing’ to get to the store to buy her dye. She returned home with her dye, but no tint brush, no rubber gloves, and no knowledge whatsoever of how to dye her hair. Curly girl au naturel that I am, I have no idea either. What I do know is that I cannot fight every battle. As she journeys down the long and painful road of asserting her independence and establishing her own identity it is my job to keep her on the high road. I am doing my best to help her avoid body piercings, tattoos, destructive hair techniques, and bad boy selections, but I can’t win every battle and temporary hair color is certainly an easy one to lose.
So, off to the bathroom she went with stern warnings…no…outright threats about what would happen if she turned my bathroom green or blue and two bottles of hair dye in tow. I stayed in another room trying to subdue my blood pressure. The rational parent side of my brain said: Whatever will be will be. She will learn. Perhaps the hard way. It is her hair. Not mine. It can’t be THAT bad. So what if her hands are green and blue. She will learn from the experience. The insecure mother side of my brain said: Oh holy hell! What if it is horrendous? What if she comes out crying? I shouldn’t be letting her do this! Where did the years go? Why has it come to this already??
Two hours later, with much prompting…no…threatening, she opened the bathroom door, soaking wet, a bizarre turquoise tint from head to toe, everywhere except…her hair. That’s right. Not one ounce of dye attached itself to that beautiful, dark, healthy hair of hers.
I nearly dyed laughing.

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