“Mate, your little guy has a case of Gingervitis!” yells Ben Wagner, a friend of ours in Australia, after meeting 3-month old J for the first time. “Yes,” I concede, “he’s a little red head.”
“Look at that carrot-top!” Says my Aunt Liz the second she lays eyes on him, and I feel a little hurt that she doesn’t mention his beautiful blue eyes or adorable smile instead.
“Look at that RED HAIR!” Giggles my sister-in-law Penny, pointing her comment directly in my husband’s direction, his obvious discomfort at having a red-head only egging her on.
Penny has three gorgeous red-heads and teasing my husband seems to be some sort of payback for her. I didn’t think the color of her children’s hair was ever a ‘thing’ for her but her relentless comments about J’s hair color seem to indicate otherwise.
Honestly, J’s red hair never bothered me until I starting worrying about it bothering other people. “Are red-headed men ugly?” I wondered to myself, then proceeded to google ‘Hot Red Headed men.” I gotta be honest, the results didn’t blow me away. I’ve never been attracted to a red-head, have you? Wait! I would hook up with Prince Harry (If I was single and ten years younger!) Prince Harry is hot! Sure, he’s a prince but he’s definitely handsome, right? Maybe my son will be one of the handsome ones?
Stop it! That’s terrible! That’s my baby you’re talking about! There’s more to him than his looks!
The thing is, I love him so much and I want him to feel handsome when he grows up. What if he gets teased for the color of his hair? What if girls look past him to the tall-dark and handsome boys instead?
To be fair, I know some really text-book gorgeous men that are complete dick-heads. One in particular has an equally stunning wife whom he cheats on repeatedly. Beautiful on the inside doesn’t equal beautiful on the inside.
Maybe average looks keep a man humble.
More than anything, I hope and pray my son is beautiful on the inside. That would be the greatest gift. Lord knows this world needs more good/kind/honest men.
I guess all this has me thinking about the pressure we feel as parents to have ‘good-looking’ children. It shouldn’t matter! It doesn’t matter! Its just too easy to jump to the conclusion that a pretty baby will have a blessed life. Not only that, because their looks are an extension of ours, if they’re beautiful that means we must be too. Hell, I even get a bit of a high when people tell me my dog is beautiful.
I am going to nip this thinking in the bud right now! I refuse to project this type of thinking onto my son. He’ll face enough of it without it coming from me. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, period!
And one things for sure, there is one person in this world already whose heart explodes with joy and love every time she sees him: his mum. To me he is the most beautiful boy in world.
And I have to laugh because a chubby, nerdy-looking red-head just walked past my table and I can’t help but think it was a little message to me from above. Time to get my thinking straight now, because my job is to raise a good man not a good-looking man.
What are your thoughts? Any red-heads out there? Any parents felt that pressure to have a good-looking baby? Let me know your thoughts! xoxo