08 Jan Making Lemonade (even a 13 year old teen can make lemonade from a lemon)
I have a story for you.
Recently a 13 year old girl was home from boarding school for the week-end and took her shower and shampooed her beautiful, long, blond hair. Wanting to keep her locks shiny and healthy she reached for the hair conditioner and generously poured it on her head, waiting a few moments for it to take and soften her hair.
Only….it wasn’t hair conditioner. It was NEET !!! (You know…the hair removing kind.)
She and her Mom were horrified. Chunks of hair – her long, beautiful, blond hair – FELL OUT!
What could they do? Wearing a hat, 24/7 just wasn’t an option. She needed to return to school and it was very close to the Christmas holidays. They made an appointment with a hairdresser to have extensions glued onto the bare patches of her scalp. But the girl was devastated, it hardly covered and her Mom was left pondering how to make her very sad daughter smile again.
A dear friend of the Mom had a light-bulb moment. Why not turn this around and book a glamour photo-shoot. It just might make her feel better about herself.
And so – they did. With me.
When they arrived, the girl was so downtrodden and sullen I was concerned I may not be able to turn this around. But as her Mom’s friend applied her make-up and she saw me coming out with props, wigs, hats and tutus – her mood lightened. This just might be fun after all!
And FUN was exactly what we had!!
(I know what you’re thinking….13 isn’t what it used to be!)
What a beautiful smile – so lovely!! I have so many hair pieces and wigs it was easy to fill in and give her back her long, golden locks.
This project seemed so personal to me too because it brought me back to when I was 15. It was the summer between Junior high and Grade 10….High School. I had long, straight, blond hair down to my waist and had been lightening it even more till it was platinum blond. Wanting to keep my roots the same color, I would run a bed of (PURE!!!) peroxide down my middle part each time I shampooed – which was every day!!
Well….you can imagine the rest. A month into Grade 10 it all broke off at the top. Like a Mohawk, only Mohawks were not in….not even thought about and definitely not cool. I glued it down for several month. Horrible. (Keeping things into perspective – it wasn’t cancer or a car accident – but for a 15 year old still pretty devastating.)
So, I could really relate and I so wanted this experience to turn her self-image around.
Here’s a little peek – behind the scenes. I love spoiling my clients. It just adds to the “dress-up” celebration!
About a week after the shoot I invited the Mom back to my studio to choose her final pictures – only she thought they were just to be viewed on a screen. Surprise….. there were her daughters beautiful images, in a personal reveal gallery, before her very eyes! After she gasped I heard her say – how to choose, I want them all!!
So, this sad, discouraged 13 year old a few weeks before was able to turn a nasty experience into one where she celebrated her uniqueness, her beauty and this special time in her life as a new teenager. She now has beautiful mementos of a time that she will be inspired by and even laugh about – many, many years from now. A story to tell her children…even grand-children.
And her Mom can feel great about helping her daughter overcome one of life’s challenges and turn lemons into lemonade.
Celebrating . . . beauty !