Interstellar Adventures

June 5, 2007

Hey Kid, Happy Birthday, Once We Get Past the Hair

Filed under: Elle & Zed,Family & Friends,It's Me, Lass,Mom Life — by InterstellarLass @ 11:11 pm

So, since it’s the summer time, and since Zed’s birthday was just around the corner, and since he needed a haircut anyway, Nick and I decidd to have a little fun. “Hey. Want to shave your head into a mowhawk?” “Ummm…sure! Why not!”

So, Nick and Zed went into the bathroom and got hair all over the place. I had to go in and clean up, both the cut and the hair. And when we were done, I think it looked pretty cool. We went and got it professionally cleaned up a little more over the weekend.

Saturday night we went to dinner with my family for Zed’s birthday. I’m surprised there’s any oxygen left on the planet from the gasps my mom and grandmother sucked down. My sisters were a little more cool. After the first hundred ‘Oh my gods’ we finally got a ‘that’s cool looking’ from one of them. My grandfather just looked at him with disapproval and said “What a disgrace.” Nice gramps. Way to start off the night. No happy birthday? Isn’t that why we were there?

My grandfather sat outside the restaurant and stewed while the rest of us went inside to eat. There was palpable tension at the table through most of dinner. Nick went a little overboard in defense of my parenting capability and I’m not sure if he and my grandmother will speak for some time, if ever.

So forget the fact that he’s first chair clarinet, that he’s in honors math, that he got a ‘commended’ score on our state-standard test, that he has the sweetest heart of any kid his age that I know, that he looks after Pop and checks on him during the day to make sure there’s nothing he needs, that he’s progressively more responsible and is dismayed any time he thinks he disappoints people. Let’s throw all that out the window because of a haircut.

There he sat, at his birthday celebration, he was apologizing for causing trouble. I told him he did nothing wrong. Because he didn’t. And neither did I. My grandmother is convinced that we’ve opened ourselves to a world of trouble by allowing him to do this. Uh. He’s almost a teenager. That’s trouble right there isn’t it? And if I though he would be negatively influenced by this action, I wouldn’t have even considered it.

This is the way my family has always been. Never fearing to stick their noses in when they haven’t been asked. Never failing to have a comment or an opinion on my choices. Nick called it ‘child rearing by committee’. And they do all act as if they have a vote. And at times in my past I wasn’t capable of pushing back on them. Of putting my foot down and saying ‘no’. Of insisting that they respect my authority as a parent.

So, because I have yet made another bad decision and failed at my parenting duties, Zed will no doubt be featured on America’s Most Wanted within the next 10 years. I’m probably going to have to visit him over the Christmas holidays in juvenile detention. He’ll be convicted of selling drugs to babies. All because at age 12 I let him shave his head into a mowhawk. Silly me. Someone revoke my rights as a parent and save my children now from the inevitable damage that I have now done to them. I’m most angry over the fact that this was his birthday. And it was sullied by the negative reactions of my family that aren’t mature enough to keep their mouths shut.

But you know what? My baby boy turned 12. On Sunday he went to training to become a timekeeper at the basketball games, earning $5 per game. Then Nick continued to contribute to his deliquency by taking him to TwinPeaks (similar to Hooters but with lumberjack girls) for lunch. He declined the photo with the girls, but accepted the koozie signed by the staff. Last night I took him shopping with his gift cards and birthday money. We went to JCPenney, armed with a $40 gift card, a $10 coupon (good on an over $10 purchase), and his ‘savings’. He had a list of what he wanted. Shoes, shorts, shirt. The Target gift card would be saved for a Gameboy game. We searched the men’s shoe section. We found a pair of Adidas sneakers ON SALE. In a size 8. Is that normal? I was shocked. He checked out on his own, using his coupon and gift card. Then we wandered over to the boys section. I helped him locate sizes. He chose styles, and tried on for fit. Then checked out on his own. The cashier complimented him on his hair, asking (though totally bald) Zed if he thought he could do that style with his ‘hair’ too. “Hey, it’s America.” and the cashier laughed. Everything he bought was on sale, and with the coupon, he only spent $4.89 of his cash. Target was out of the Gameboy game Zed wanted, so he decided to save it rather than buying something he really didn’t want.

I’m so proud of Zed. I could brag on him all day. He is a wonderful, sweet, warm-hearted, kind, loving, smart, responsible (for a 12 year old), trustworthy, funny (funny!) kid. I could not have asked for a more perfect son. All you moms know that squeeze of your heart when you think about how much you love your kids. It’s both heart-wrenching and exciting watching them grow up. My time getting him ready for the world is already over half gone by, and the next few years are going to fly by I feel.

Happy Birthday Sweetie. I love you.

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13 Comments »

  1. Geez! Your relations really messed up Zed’s birthday dinner over his hair??

    Well, happy birthday to him anyway, I say! I will admit that I personally don’t like mohawks, but it’s NONE OF MY BUSINESS. He sounds like a great kid and he’s big 12 now, so mohawk away!

    Comment by AbbyNormal — June 6, 2007 @ 8:28 am |Reply

  2. I guess they never had any children that were high school wrestlers. Back in my day, a mohawk was tame. wait, did I just type “back in my day?”

    Comment by Sparky Duck — June 6, 2007 @ 8:54 am |Reply

  3. oh yea, happy belated birthday, kid

    Comment by Sparky Duck — June 6, 2007 @ 8:54 am |Reply

  4. Happy Birthday, Zed! You ROCK! Your mom rocks too, her family just doesn’t know it yet.
    Seriously Lass, at the end of the day, when you close your eyes, you can sleep well. Zed sounds like he has a good head on his shoulders. If they don’t have what it takes to congratulate a 12 year old on his birthday because of a hair issue, that’s just wrong. It’s summer anyway. Isn’t that the time to get crazy and hang loose? Hang in there and stand your ground.

    Comment by Laura — June 6, 2007 @ 11:13 am |Reply

  5. Happy birthday Zed!!! And good job, Mom & Nick, for keeping your heads squarely on your shoulders. Obviously you know what’s important!!

    Comment by Marie — June 6, 2007 @ 2:19 pm |Reply

  6. Just for fun, the whole family should show up at the next event in mowhawks. That’ll fix em…

    Comment by nittanybri — June 6, 2007 @ 2:36 pm |Reply

  7. The shock value is half the fun!! It’s hair, it’ll grow back, granny and gramps need to get over it, but that’s their problem. I’m sure it’s cute. I love a good mohawk!! I say Nick should get one and then there should be lots of pictures!!! I haven’t seen any gratuitous Nick pics lately!

    Comment by carnealian — June 6, 2007 @ 6:06 pm |Reply

  8. Awwww. Happy birthday to Zed.

    Sorry your folks put a damper on the dinner, but you guys are strong enough to have gotten through it in style!!

    Comment by raehan — June 6, 2007 @ 10:23 pm |Reply

  9. I think Gramps should have dug just a bit deeper.
    Sounds like one cool kid.
    I can’t say much regarding the hair (I have none) but I have learned that appearances, more often than not, mean nothing.
    Prove Gramps wrong, Zed.
    You got game…
    ~m

    Comment by ~m — June 7, 2007 @ 6:25 am |Reply

  10. Oh my goodness. I can’t believe they made a fuss in front of him!! On his birthday! Riley’s entire team is getting mohawks for the summer. There’s nothing wrong with it. I always tell Brian, when the kids are older and the only trouble they give me is wanting to do something crazy with their hair, I will take that kind of trouble any day. I know he’s a good kid.

    Comment by Jolynn — June 7, 2007 @ 10:44 am |Reply

  11. send this pic to your relatives! they’ll love it! http://www.flickr.com/photos/ryanroth/529051463/

    Comment by crystal — June 8, 2007 @ 7:12 pm |Reply

  12. Happy Belated Birthday!

    Forget the extended family. I am done w. Family. PLus, you son is “da bomb!”

    And, this is such a sweet post about your baby, it brings tears to my eyes. You want to let them go and squeeze them tight at the same time.

    Comment by Nancy — June 16, 2007 @ 6:50 am |Reply

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