Monday, 7 May 2012

St. Baldrick's Day.

How many times had I thought before "It would be so cool if I could shave my head". We've all said it. Especially on bad hair days. Finding out about St. Baldrick's Charity gave me a nudge in the direction of feeling like it was something I could do. I could cross an item off my "What if..." list AND raise money for a good cause. I had mentioned the idea publicly a few times, so when it came time to sign up it was Truth Time. Either Put Up or Shut Up. My mantra has always been "It's only hair. It'll grow back". What did I really have to lose? My hair has hardly been my glory. I've been dying it since I was 15, so it is well over processed. I hadn't had it cut since before Oz was born (seriously, the last haircut I got was a few weeks before I found out I was pregnant. If you watch my prego photos, you can also watch my hair grow!).  

So I signed up and started asking for donations. About 98% came from online donations. If you want to restore your faith in humanity, find a cause and watch people want to help. The generosity of others is humbling and a beautiful thing. I have surrounded myself with giving people. Good people. So many times I was moved to tears by generosity. Absolutely amazing. 

What was also amazing was how the day approached I kept getting asked if I was nervous yet. And it just wasn't happening. I just kept getting more and more excited and ready to do it. Either my head would look hilarious and we'd all have a good laugh over my bald head, or it would be awesome and I would rock the Sinead O'Conner look. Regardless, a lot of money would be earned for charity and that is wins all around.

So here is me on the morning of, about to get in the car and head down. My hair is currently up in a twist and pulled back with a head band. I think I had been rocking this look for over a year. It was my go-to "Mom" look. I kind of miss it. Just kind of.

I wish we had measured how long my hair was. When I pulled it down, there were a few gasps of surprise from the crowd. I was by no means the first woman up there to get her head shaved, but to that point, I had the longest hair to lose (later some other long haired ladies shaved too!). The woman shaving asked if I wanted to donate my hair to Locks Of Love, but unfortunately, my hair was just way too damaged with color to donate. There was still a lot of bleach and pink in there...grown out several inches from the root.

My whole family came right up front to the state to cheer me on. A few older ladies from the crowd gave me a great big "YOU GO GIRL!". A gentlemen walked up to the stage and gave me a small applause and said "Good for you". My biggest concern at that moment tho was to make sure that I looked like I was having a good time. I at no point wanted Oz to see me scared or nervous or think that I was being hurt. So I put on a lot of big faces and smiles and laughs to let him know that Momma was a-okay and having fun.

I knew the shape of my head may be funny. It's a risk you run, no one really knows what it looks like until you do it. At some point early into this I looked at my big sister, Deb. She had tears in her eyes and she said "It's just beautiful". I knew then my head was going to be okay. If I was a lumpy mess she would have laughed and that would have been fine too. The good thing about sisters is that they will tell you the truth. They don't worry too much about hurting your feelings, in good times and bad.

It felt very weird to hold my hair in hands. I remember someone asked me if it was heavy and I said "No". My hair is very thin, so it just felt...light.

I'm not sure what was so funny at this point, but something was. I think it is a good photo of how great that day was.

My happy little family. 

 So this is what my head looks like. It's amazing how hair helps maintain your body's temperature. Without it, you feel heat on your head intensely, and cold like no other. I needed a beanie to go to the supermarket because otherwise I was just too cold and miserable. The first few weeks were interesting. Some people will avoid eye contact with you at all costs. Others make a point to look you right in the eye and smile at you. It's amazing how much more quickly you can get ready when you don't have to worry about your hair.

I've loved having my head shaved. I'm actually about to do it again. The first time, I could tell people "I did it for charity". This time, I will have to concede, "I did it because I like it". And I do. My husband thinks it's beautiful (how lucky am i? I have a husband that will happily shun the standard convention of beauty because he finds beauty in me). My son loves it too. Sometimes he will just give my head a good rub. Maybe this will be the last time for awhile. Maybe not. I haven't been terribly keen on the growing out process and I'm thinking I may buy a wig for this awkward stage next time. I don't know. We'll decide that when we get there. All I know is, this has been an awesome experience. I hope other people find something that scares and excites them and try it anyways....and if it can earn money for charity, well then, really...what's keeping you?

No comments: