I Am Going Bald: Christine’s Story
I'm shaving my head to benefit St. Baldrick's Foundation on March 16. This series will document why I'm doing such a thing.
Let me introduce you to my friend Christine:
I could end this post here because her photo sums up why I am going bald. Transformation.
Christine was a St. Baldrick’s shavee in 2007 and this is her story:
“I had always attended the St Baldrick’s fundraisers each year and watched many women bravely shave off their hair…. While I thought that it was an amazing, selfless act, I didn’t think that I would ever actually do it myself. I was in my early twenties and my long locks were a huge part of my identity. It wasn’t until December of 2006, I was reading the News Paper about an acquaintance I knew growing up that had recently been diagnosed with and was battling Leukaemia. I was emotionally struck by this article, she was 25 years old, gorgeous and growing up, every girl wanted her beautiful thick head of hair. Laurie and I would eventually be reacquainted through St Baldrick’s and become friends. In that moment of reading this news, I decided that I wanted to do something to show my support. When I asked her if I could donate my St Baldrick’s efforts in her honour, she was overwhelmed with gratitude and then she sarcastically said, “and now I am going to have competition for the hottest bald head… thanks” I always admired how she maintained her humour and gratitude during the course of her illness and treatment. Her bravery through what was truly a life changing and gruelling experience, taught me so much. It was through her experience that I realised that my true identity was never going to be in how I physically looked.
While I personally strive to donate to cancer causes that put money towards preventative research, I decided that participating in Baldrick’s was a way of trying to not only generate funds for cancer research but also give me the opportunity to physically show my support. Whilst I will never know what it feels like to have the choice of losing my hair taken from me due to illness, the whole the experience was truly liberating in a way that I didn’t expect. People were so unbelievably generous and I could not believe how willing friends and perfect strangers were willing to donate to the cause. Shaving my head of hair was no big deal in the end, in fact, I surprisingly received more compliments with no hair than I ever had with my long set of locks.. But more seriously, Laurie was fighting for her life, what I was doing was trivial to what she was going through. She joked on several occasions that she’d pay me to keep my hair because it sucked to lose it all against her free will. My goal was to raise as much as possible but I went big and wasn’t going to settle for anything less that $50,000. At the time I was working for ‘Corporate America’ so I would hit up every contact I knew. With the help of the company I worked for at the time, I managed to raised roughly $85,000. I personally raised close to $65,000 on my own and my company donated an additional 20K. I was overwhelmed with gratitude. I tried to ensure that the majority of the funds went to a local charity PALS which assists families in need when battling cancer.
My friend Laurie sadly passed away a few months after the event, my fundraising efforts could not save her but they can perhaps help the future generations of children and adults that are so deeply affected by this disease.”
Thank you, Christine. You are inspiring and amazing and I’m so grateful you shared your story.
As for me, things are getting
dire higher on the hair front. The higher the hair, the closer to god, right? My bedhead is so spectacular I should never leave my bed. Can I do that?
In 26 days I am going bald.
If you would like to donate to St. Baldrick's to help fund childhood cancer research, please click here.