I’ve been bald for almost a month now and I must say it’s a non-issue. It helps that I had short hair going in to St. Baldrick’s but unless I catch myself in the mirror, I’ve totally forgotten about it. People stare for sure but since I’m with Farrah they quickly move down to meet her smile and the awkward moment passes, adorably. Only one stranger has asked me why I’m bald and when I told her she thanked me and referred to her own hair as “chemo curls”. It was an unexpected and happy exchange.
One thing I trusted after shaving my head was the need to wear makeup every single day – “I have to compensate for having no hair! How else will I be pretty? Don’t forget earrings!” It is hard to shake the uniform of femininity. What I could get away with before, when I had hair, was simply no longer an option.
That lasted about two weeks.
I enjoy make-up. I like to play with it and prefer how I look with it painted on, but if I can’t get to it in the morning it doesn’t make me feel bad. In fact, being bald and clean-faced has produced the opposite effect – I feel great in its purity. I feel lighter and healthier and brighter. It has dawned on me that this levity is what most men enjoy every single day of their lives. Like wearing cufflinks, the simple act of shaving my head and not wearing makeup has provided profound insight into my other half. It has opened doors and created opportunity for self-acceptance and even self-love.
On a related note, I thought for sure Arlo’s preschool friends would flip their wee lids when they saw me bald for the first time. Ann shared how one of her son’s friends asked if she was still a girl! I anticipated these kinds of questions and other observations but talk about a non-issue – those kids were fascinated by only one aspect of my appearance – my eye shadow. Since I tend to wear bright colors to contrast my brown eyes, my makeup is a topic of endless curiosity with the preschool crowd. No hair? No problem. BUT WHY DID YOU PAINT YOUR EYES?
Thank you again for you support and encouragement throughout this process!