As most of you know, it’s been almost a week since I went bald. And let me just tell you, it’s been awesome. On April 1st a group of us (myself, my husband, my sister-in-law, and some friends) participated in a St. Baldrick’s event to shave our heads to raise funds and awareness for children’s cancer. I wasn’t nervous until right before I sat in the chair, but the nerves were gone as soon as they were done shaving. It was so awesome seeing people do this for a great cause and seeing people donate for a great cause. It was a great night with a lot of fun, some laughs, and some tears. It was such an empowering moment when you don’t have any hair to hide behind. It was like my hair was my shield. I didn’t realize how exposed I would feel now…I’m still getting used to that feeling but it’s slowly becoming something I’m getting used to. By shaving my head, I felt like I was doing something to help, other than donating money. It’s my hope that other cancer patients feel less alone when their friends and family shave in honor of them. I only wish that funding and research for childhood cancer wasn’t such an overlooked area, but our team was able to raise several thousand dollars to go towards research!
Other than trying to increase awareness to childhood cancer (which is the main reason I did this), there are some other perks!
- I can now drive my car with all the windows down and hair will not get in my eyes or mouth. No more hair slapping my face from the wind or strands of hair to get in my eyes and blind me for a second. It is really awesome!
- My time to get ready in the morning has gone from 40 minutes to 10 minutes. That means more time to sleep! I cannot explain to you (unless you’re a woman) how much I hated drying my hair and then either straightening it or curling it.
- I haven’t been able to work out lately because of this broken finger, but when I finally am able to, I will be so excited to not have to continuously wipe my hair out of my eyes. When I’m trying to keep up with Shaun T, it’s really a pain to keep breathing in hair…and for some reason it never wanted to stay pulled back. Now I won’t have that problem!
- It sounds funny, but now that my hair is technically “fixed” all the time, I can focus on my makeup! I’ve never really been one for a lot of makeup, but now I’ve been able to really do it right. I used to only wear makeup if my hair looked really good; for some reason I thought I would look bad if I did my makeup really well but my hair looked like crap. So, now that my hair takes care of itself, I feel like my face has to look the part, too!
- Going bald has forced me to not care what other people think. That is something that I’ve always had a hard time with, so doing something this drastic has forced me to take a step out of my comfort zone. It hasn’t been as bad as I thought it would be – it’s almost like I have the upper hand in certain situations. When I go into work, the grocery store, or wherever, I’m prepared that people might look at me strangely. But they don’t know that they’re getting ready to see a bald woman walk in. So, it’s kind of entertaining to watch people’s responses because I know to expect them.
When I went back to work the day after the shave, I was going to wear a wig but then I tried them on and they were just too itchy and uncomfortable. Then I tried to wear some hats but they just didn’t look right. So, I decided to just go for it and just went bald. At work, I was walking down the hall and someone was coming towards me…she glanced up at me but then looked down at her coffee and then looked like she couldn’t walk fast enough to get to her turn so that she didn’t have to pass me face-to-face. I just had to laugh – it’s like my very own entertainment sometimes…just to see people’s reactions. I have noticed that only 2 people have asked me why I shaved my head. Granted, if I saw someone bald, I wouldn’t go up to them and ask why they were bald. But I wouldn’t look away from them and try to get away as if they were an alien that just landed from another planet. It’s just hair, people! I don’t know why more women don’t go bald – I guess long, pretty hair is what is still expected of women and some people think that you’re crazy for shaving it all off. I used to be known for my hair; it was long and so thick, but it was also a real pain and I haven’t missed it for a minute! I don’t know that I’ll ever have the patience to grow it long again…
I guess this whole thing has been on my mind so much that I dreamed about it last night. I dreamed that my hair grew back to beyond my shoulders overnight and I was so upset. So, in my dream I shaved it back off! I was glad to wake up with less than an inch of hair :)
Most of all, I have been overwhelmed with all the kind words from everyone. Honestly, if I’m having a bad day, all I have to do is go back to the first picture I posted of myself on Facebook and read all the comments. It has absolutely warmed my heart to see all the wonderful compliments from people. Thank you all for your support :) And keep the prayers coming for Harlan, which is who I did this for!