I often look back on the days when I was a young nanny in my 20’s, truly knowing nothing of parenthood but thinking I know everything. Watching the children of busy parents for a few hours a day seemed to make me think that somehow, I was an expert on the matter. I was so judgmental then. I’m almost embarrassed to admit this but I remember seeing kids volunteering in my church’s nursery and thinking often about the hair. Why did I have time to do this? I literally have no idea but it was a thing for me. I would resolve to myself that when I had a baby, I’d cut their hair to be super trendy and not let these weird baby mullets happen to my kids. What were parents thinking, letting their kids run around like that?
Yeah, did I mention I knew nothing about parenting? Boy was I in for a surprise!
Fast forward to a good 6 or 7 years forward and here I am, with a cute little 18-month-old in my arms sporting his very own baby mullet. Life is nothing but ironic and while circumstances lead to the awkward hairstyle my son was wearing, my attitude about it was much different than years past. Both of my kids had weird hair as babies. My son, Ezra, was barely born with any and while it was starting to grow in, it really only seemed to gather around the sides. My husband and I would laugh and remark on how he resembled a middle aged balding man. Only in good fun, of course! As time went on, the growth seemed uneven but for us it really didn’t make sense to cut his hair in this weird growing phase. We just went with it. He was cute and so it didn’t seem to really matter. Shortly after his one-year-old birthday, the mullet started to really take shape. I noticed it, made a mental note that it was finally time for his first haircut but couldn’t seem to actually get around to it. Things would come up, big things that stole our attention away. Weekends got full and time just seemed to truly disappear as it does when you’re a full-time working parent. And so, the mullet grew.
About a month ago, people starting making comments about it. Some were family members, and some were complete strangers. Instead of feeling embarrassed about it, I took it with pride. Mullets were kind of novel, perhaps it’s because of the popularity around Netflix’s Stranger Things. While it was kind of fun flaunting my kid’s baby mullet around, I knew I really did have to get him in for a hair cut. It was time and I was ready for my little guy to hit that first milestone. But before chopping off all of those gorgeous, golden locks I felt I had to commemorate the mullet that was. And so an idea began forming inside of my crazy, creative brain.
One thing I really enjoy looking at is cosplay photography. It’s so fun and I have a friend that really specializes in the niche. I’ve always had an inner nerd myself so I decided that now was the time to venture into this world. With the third season of Stranger Things coming out in July, many retailers got behind the launch. Target put out several fun items including pool floats, towels and plenty of other summer themed items to kick off the series. Of course, multiple things were on my wish list. We binged the series the moment it came out. Instead of watching fire works, we were tuning in for the new season. Don’t worry, I’m not going to spoil anything but the character Billy plays a much more predominant role in the third season. If you have seen it, you know exactly what I’m talking about and if you haven’t, what are you doing with your life? Drop everything and get that television on! I really liked what they did with Billy’s character this season. My feelings about him became complicated with the new background information that was revealed and I absolutely loved how they portrayed him as the hottest lifeguard on duty with that fantastic mullet!
With his own mullet and complicated behavior, my son reminded me of Billy. Ezra’s full of mischief and, of course, is a total babe magnet! So, it all just came together in my head one day. I was going to do a Stranger Things cosplay photo shoot with my son as the star. He would be Billy with a fake hoop earring in one ear, a peach fuzz mustache and a gold chain around his neck. I grabbed a photographer I’ve really come to respect on both a personal and professional level. It didn’t take long for him to consider himself in after I explained the synopsis. With my fan paraphernalia from Target, we met at a local pool and had fun being creative with the various shots portrayed. To be honest, I definitely wouldn’t recommend to typically do a photo shoot like this with a toddler. It can easily become dangerous and we had to have the help of multiple people around to make sure things stayed safe. The teamwork really made a difference. After leaving the pool that day, I couldn’t wait to see the final result. I was thrilled when I got the photos back and got to work immediately on adding some strange details. Some of the most recognizable parts from various seasons were Photoshopped in to give off an unworldly atmosphere.
I love that we got the opportunity to do this. We’ll have some really fun photos to remember my son in his first year and hopefully he’ll enjoy the story behind them when he’s much older. I guess I showed that 20-something-year-old me from several years ago what being a parent really looks like. I hope you enjoy the photos as much as we did. Thank you to Roger Casama of Graiemark Studio for your amazing talents in photography!