When I was pregnant I often heard, “I guess you’ll have to cut your hair now.”

Why? I was proud of my long locks and considered them part of my identity. I’m not sure who started the have-a-baby-chop-it-off trend, but I planned to buck the system.

“You’ll change your mind,” some would say. Thanks for the thought, but no, I wouldn’t and I didn’t.

I have always loved having long hair. Maybe it is because I feel more beautiful, youthful, feminine, sexy and confident with it. I have always been known as “the girl with the long hair” -- it’s sort of my thing.

Having a baby didn’t have to change that. After all, there are ponytail holders, headbands, barrettes and braids.

The fact of the matter is that having children already altered my appearance -- hello baby weight, stretch marks and cesarean scar -- but I still have control of my hair. My hair is my choice.

Sure, 99% of the time it’s in a sloppy bun, gets pulled, and has been the victim of spit-up, baby food and other mysterious substances. But on rare occasions like a date with my husband, or – gasp – a girls’ night, those long locks flow. I look and feel like a million bucks and I’m happy that I didn’t go under the knife… I mean scissors.

I am now known as “the mom with the long hair.” My husband appreciates it, my children admire it and my friends are often inspired by it. After shorter cuts, some of them are now growing their hair back out because they love the way it looks and makes them feel. They realize that yes, despite what we’ve heard, you CAN juggle motherhood and have terrific tresses.

My advice to others? Don’t feel pressured into chopping it off with the arrival of your children. If having long hair is important to you, there is no need to make that kind of sacrifice - goodness knows, we mamas sacrifice so much already. I encourage you to stay strong and keep it long.