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Monday, July 06, 2009

If you can't trust your friends, then I hope you have a Mommy...

It's summer. I expect some bonehead moves by The Grommet during summer. It's usually the outcome of harmless fun. He's lost his car keys before and had to be rescued. He's broken fins off of surfboards. He's jumped in the ocean with his cell phone in his pocket. He's taken all of our toilet paper for T.P. raids and left us stranded. There are numerous events that I'm sure I don't even know about because he has his friends to bail him out of whatever "duh" moment he might encounter that doesn't require parental consent or money. I'm quite sure that it works the same way with them; he's there when they need him. Money being the operative word because he's an "adult" now and really doesn't require our approval for the decisions he makes. However, I'm glad to say he DOES seek out our counsel for most, if not all, of his prospective comings and goings.

I got a call at work:

Bry: Hey Mommy, I'm thinking about dying my hair blonde.
Pua: Why?
Bry: The guys and I thought it would be fun.
Pua: YOU thought it would be fun? Or THE GUYS thought it would be fun? I mean,
Bry, it's YOUR hair...THEY don't have to walk around with it.
Bry: Well, it's all of us.
Pua: And which one of "all of us" is doing this?
Bry: Jeff, Jon, and Juice.
Pua: Um, well Bry, again..it's YOUR hair and you're 19. Really, what do I have
to say about it? It's your decision. But I'll remind you that you guys
have done some pretty crazy things to Jon's hair in the past. Remember
that payback's a bitch.
Bry: Yeah, but I trust them. It'll be fun for the summer. I just wondered
what you thought.
Pua: Bryson, as I recall, you went to summer camp when you were 9 and came home
with bleached hair. I don't remember you calling and asking me what I
thought then. Why now?
Bry: (laughing) True. I don't know..I guess 'cuz you're my Mommy and I trust
Pua: Ha! Well then, I hope you trust your friends as much as you trust me.
Bry: Okay. See you later.

I thought about our conversation for a few minutes after the call. As much as I love those boys, I wouldn't trust them with my hair. The fact is, my son is ALL ABOUT his hair. He's kinda like John Travolta's Tony Manero. This boy takes longer to do his hair than both of his sisters take to do theirs combined. God forbid anyone should touch it after it's perfectly coiffed. I've also been present when they decided to shave designs into their friend Jon's hair. I shudder. I know Jon's mom has shuddered as well. Jon's a much better sport about his hair than Bry. I end the thinking process with the comforting notion that it's just hair and hair grows back. That's always been my M.O. Choose your battles. This isn't one that requires too much emotion on my part. Hair grows back and it's just not a big deal. Not a big deal to me anyway.

Four hours later, Charlie, Caris and I are in the living room talking about her plans for the 4th. Suddenly, Ellie starts barking wildly and running to the front door. It's not that "Hi there!" kind of bark. It's that growly "Stranger Alert" kind of bark. As the stranger gets closer, Charlie says; "Who's this kid? One of Bry's friends?" Caris and I, almost simultaneously, blurt out; "Ohhh myyy gawddd..it's Bryson!" He comes in the door and stands in the doorway. His hair..
well, my first thought was that he looked like one of Fred and Fanny Farkel's kids. Yeah, I'm dating myself, but that's the honest truth about what was running through my head. The problem is that what was running through my head came out as uncontrolable laughter. Caris and I were doing spit-takes. I knew in an instant that Caris was going to get a lot of mileage off of this CHAMPION of bonehead moves on Bry's part. Charlie just had a look of horror on his face and said; "Bryson! What the hell?" Bry looked like he was going to cry. His friend Juice followed him in the door with the biggest shit-eating grin on his face. He began to explain...

THIS is BEFORE it happened:

THIS is what was supposed to happen:

THIS is what actually happened:

I regained my composure while he pleaded with me to help him. I did not give him the "What did you think was going to happen?" lecture. Charlie and Caris were handling that quite well. I led my distraught son and his snickering friend out the back door to the patio to have a seat and calm down while I went inside to find one of my handy-dandy, always on-hand boxes of hair color. I could hear Caris through my bathroom window giggling and giving him the business. When I got out there, she was walking around him like a shark circling a wounded seal, delivering jab after jab. I told her to stop, but I think all the years of frustration of sharing a bathroom with him were bubbling to the surface and she was getting her money's worth.

I told him that I knew that this wasn't going to get him back to his natural hair color and that it would probably be lighter. He said anything was better and that if it didn't work that he was just going to shave his head and wear a cap until it grew back. Caris told him that she was SURE it wouldn't work and that he should just skip the repair process and go ahead and shave. At this point, I literally escorted her, still laughing, to the door and told her she needed to go. I have to say, Bry took her ribbing pretty well. He never got mad at her or yelled back at her. He took all her crap without a word. I was pretty proud of him. I think she was the least of his worries.

Once we got the color in and he went and showered, I got all my laughter out. Charlie was still horrified. I told him, as I often do, that this just isn't something to get his knickers in a twist over. It's just good, clean, fun. Sure, it's a lesson learned and I'm sure he won't let his friends near his hair again. But c'mon, who got hurt? Let it go.

When Bry got out of the shower, he looked more like Bry again. It's a little lighter than his normal color, but it's definitely brown again. He was smiling and came and wrapped his arms around me in a big, tight hug and whispered in my ear; "I love you. Thank you SOOOOO much."

Mom and L'oreal to the rescue. I guess his nickname has now changed from "Grommet" to "Leprechaun" and his friends gave him a pretty hard time on the 4th. But I think that's a whole lot better than "Junior Farkle".

THIS is after Mom saved the day...Happy 4th!: