Some people should really be reminded of their manners, from curious looks to downright stare fest, seriously. I have been getting this a lot lately. Yes, I am bald. Yes, I’m a woman. No, it wasn’t by choice that I’m bald. No, I’m not on Chemotherapy. Yes, those are extra-bald patches you see scattered all over the backside of my head. Yes, it’s a disease; and before you give me that look, no, it’s not infectious. It’s Alopecia Areata. Google it. Get over it.
I would say I found out about my Alopecia in December last year but that would be lying. For several months before then, I have been actively ignoring the bald spots on my head while painfully enjoying my usually fierce and fabulous short hair. The bald patches kept getting bigger, multiplying beyond my control, until there was no way to hide them anymore. And then December came, what’s left of my hair had to go. Cue violins.
I may not be as vain as most women but I’m definitely all woman in and out, and my hair is supposed to be my crowning glory, right? Imagine my devastation then, and imagine my struggle every day since. Somebody hand me a huge box of tissue right now. The big question was to wear or not to wear a wig? Hah. I chose to embrace it, or at least learn to, while my loved ones remain in denial. Gallivanting hairless was the least of my worries.
Where I’m from, awareness of Alopecia Areata is quite next to nil. Even I didn’t know about it until I had it. Guilty as charged; shoot me. Without the awareness of the people around me, it was a challenge finding support from anyone anywhere. Hey, it’s already a challenge finding a cure, least I could hope for is emotional support, right? I’m a hopeful person like that. Like the awareness of the disease, the support I was hoping for was next to nil as well. From being at the receiving end of tasteless shampoo jokes to accusations of going insane for shaving my hair, I took it all smiling. Ignorance is not an excuse though, correct? It’s just depressing.
These days I try to keep to myself about my Alopecia. Try. You put a happy face on. Keep your brave mask handy. Self-esteem be damned, swear you’ll rise above this. It’s all a piece of cake. But seriously though, it’s just rude to stare.
***Updating this post with a few of the websites I found to be useful and informative (will add more in the next days):