So yesterday my two boys got their annual summer mohawks. The tradition started when my oldest was in first grade. One night in the bath tub I made him a soap ‘hawk and as he was admiring it I suggested he get a real one for the summer. Done deal right? Mom started hearing the rumors that the ‘hawk was happening and tried to fight it. But the momentum was there and no one was stopping it. The agreement was that he could get it during the last week of school and have it shaved off in the fall before 2nd grade started.
We generally cut the kids’ hair ourselves, but for this we sought out a professional and she was all too enthusiastic about it. She assumed we wanted one of those heinous faux hawks so we quickly corrected her and she got to shaving. Once everything was spiked and sprayed the question of color came up and he wanted red but settled for green. She was so proud of her work that she took a side view picture that remains up on the wall today.
A seven year old with a mohawk gets some curious looks from both parents and other kids. Most parents are appalled that we would let such a thing happen while most kids are jealous and hate their parents for not letting them do it. A few kids can be mean and question why you’d do such a thing unless you’re one of the ‘cool’ kids, but he handled it very well and developed a ‘so what’ attitude towards the wanna-be-bullies which shut them up. The mean spirited comments picked up steam the following year causing him to question the tradition last year and not go through with it. We respected his decision of course, but wondered if we’d made a mistake in the first place.
This year he recalled the incidents of third grade, but decided that he was ready for anything this time. We also tossed his little brother into the mix to see if he’d go with the flow. He’s a year younger and is just finishing up kindergarten…he wavered right up until the last minute but went for it.
He tends to be very shy in public and around strangers so we were quick to point out that people might ask him about his hair and that he had to do his best to answer them. We’ll see how that goes, but I think he’ll manage and it might bring him out of his shell a little. My job as a parent now is to look those close minded parents in the eye and challenge them to say something negative. I look forward to it.
If you live in Northern Westchester and your kid needs a mohawk then head over to Kid Styles on North Bedford Rd. in Bedford Hills