Learning To Let Go

by admin on February 24, 2013

I didn’t choose hair loss, it chose me.

I battled for years. I felt I had lost, I felt withdrawn and depressed and a feeling of absolutely no hope. I suffered tremendously as I saw myself fade away and was confronted with a reflection of a person I no longer knew. Not just in the change of appearance as a result from hair loss, but rather just in the change in me.

I finally let go.

I let go of hoping my former self would come back, that all my hair would return, but rather accepted what was and is and took steps to do what I could to help myself.

I wear a wig.

That lone sentence by itself almost seems like it’s a part of my lost battle, but rather it was the winning move and it is what enabled me to move forward and move past the former years of depression and self loathing. It is a sentence of victory. In those 4 words, you may not see it, but it’s acceptance and an understanding that life is ever changing. WE are always changing, and what was 2 seconds ago is already the past.

We may not want to be on this road we have found ourselves on, but we are here, so we best keep walking and exploring onwards. No point in doing what I did, which was find a rock and hide under it hoping that a miracle would save me.

In the years since having started The WHLP, I have seen women come and go, and make such bold moves and decisions to reclaim themselves. Shaving their heads, wearing wigs, bonded toppers, or just accepting what was there and deciding to no longer worry about it. I often just sat paralyzed under my rock, wondering why I could not move forward. What was wrong with ME? Why was I so resistant ? I suppose I just didn’t want to give up on my hair, though it clearly had given up on me long ago. I held it in the highest regard, but forgot that I was really just holding onto a memory, something that was, and no longer ever could or would be again. I put my former bio hair on a pedestal, and then prayed along side it. Doing that only kept me still, stuck in quick sand and not progressing. Now I put my hair on a mannequin and blow it kisses as I walk by ;)

I say F U to my hair loss and I deny it the right to steal anymore years. We are so much more than our hair.

We choose our happiness. We choose how we deal with life’s twists and turns. I didn’t choose hair loss, but I made a plethora of choices since then, many of which involved massive pity parties, to which I was the only attendee.

Maybe one day I’ll shave my head, and that will be a choice. Or maybe I’ll just end up having a wig room like Phyllis Diller, OR maybe I’ll do both. Who knows what the future holds.

Only one thing is certain, I know I will no longer allow myself to be a prisoner to my hair loss. Yes, I’m sure there will be up’s and downs as I continue on this path I was placed upon, but I am no longer fearful, I know I will be okay.

As Morgan Freeman so eloquently stated in the movie Shawshank Redemption, “Get busy living, or get busy dying.”

Love To All!

XOXO

{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Jessica February 24, 2013 at 12:12 pm

Beautiful – thank you – wishing you always the best x

Ciella February 24, 2013 at 1:01 pm

Thank you Y for this really beautiful and inspiring post:) It says it as it is. Even tho’ it does not at all seem easy to do, but CAN be done if we choose to do so…I hope all of us can choose to be on the road to HAPPINESS…and then have the strength to KEEP MOVING FORWARD. There IS a sunshine on the horizon. And there will ALWAYS be issues in life, HL or no HL….HL just happens to be one of the major stumbling blocks…but once we climb over the HL obstacle, we CAN indeed feel happiness once again:)

Thank you and may God bless you…xx

Gls February 24, 2013 at 2:33 pm

Thanks for your inspirational post! It saved me today from a downward spiral in how I feel about myself.

Janet February 24, 2013 at 2:57 pm

Thank you!!!

I hope you know how much you have given and continue to give to all of us on this journey.

May you have many, many blessings on your journey.

admin February 24, 2013 at 4:41 pm

@Jessica – Thank you !

@Ciella – Great words, you always offer much inspiration and support always!

@Gls – I’m so glad, this post helped you today. There are always going to be ups and downs, I think they key is making the turn over rate quicker and getting back to the path of wanting to not let this consume us and rule our lives. There is always hope :)

@Janet – Thank you!

XOXO

livingthiswithyou February 24, 2013 at 4:56 pm

I prayed for years for my hair to grow back. . . experimented with wigs and “systems” then finally realized wigs were the best best for me. (I could take them off when I got home and rub/massage my head; and let it breathe).
I don’t know why God allows this. . . .we are both very beautiful women (as well as the others on this site).. . . could it be the thorn in the side that Paul talked about in the Bible? To keep us from getting too haughty or ahead of ourselves. I don’t know. Only he knows. Keep smiling!
Have you seen the actress who lost her hair to alopecia. . .I’ll try to find the link.

livingthiswithyou February 24, 2013 at 4:58 pm

Here’s the link–actress with hair loss.
http://girlfromdownunder.com/

Ann February 24, 2013 at 5:17 pm

Love this post! Happiness is a choice!

Angie T February 24, 2013 at 5:21 pm

Beautiful, amazing post. These words really spoke to me -” Now I put my hair on a mannequin and blow it kisses as I walk by.”

That sums it beautifully. You’re an amazing inspiration to us all!

Maria S February 24, 2013 at 6:35 pm

Thank you so much. I was feeling so depressed today and you made me feel better, thank you very very much. xxx

Lina, Eva and jacqui February 24, 2013 at 6:42 pm

First, welcome back! I missed you!
Guess what? Hair loss chose me too.
Your words resonate, the step to doing something to change what was crippling me was because I viewed it as defeat as well. I gave this shit my heart, soul, tears, hopes and suffering alone and for years and coming to the realization that I couldn’t do anything about it was a defeat to me until I realized that I actually could do something about it. Accepting the things we cannot change has to be one of the hardest things to do – this applies to more than hair loss.
I wear a wig.
I wear a wig – and that too has helped me move forward. This journey took so much more than my hair and for so long. No more! I hate hair loss! However, those are my cards. You, this site, the women here have been an instrumental part in my healing. I shutter to fear what life would look like for me had I never found you all.
To live again is an immeasurable gift and a lesson I’m glad I learned – I wish I had learned it sooner.
I love my wigs – (still wish I didn’t need them but that point is mute). This, coming from a girl who wanted to cry and couldn’t wait to come home to rip it off her head the first week!

The bond I feel here is truly a gift and a blessing. Thank you Y for this amazing post and for all you do. Thank you to all my sisters here too.

I wish you all peace and happiness Xo

Lina(Eva and Jacqui too – those are the girls I blow kisses to ;-)

moonstruck February 24, 2013 at 7:33 pm

Thank you for this inspirational post! I look forward to that day in my own future ,when I too, can also say FU to my hairloss,and blow kisses of gratitude to “my girls”,
moonstruck

Chris February 24, 2013 at 7:53 pm

Beautifully written, your words say so much that we all need to hear no matter what life challenges us with.

Mary February 24, 2013 at 11:49 pm

What a beautiful post. If it wasnt for you and the web site you created-I know I would feel so alone in this struggle. Not that I still dont wonder why this has happened- still thinking there is something that is causing the hair loss that just hasnt been medically found . But because of your website-I know there are thousands of other women going through the same nightmare-which made me realize I am not some kind of freak of nature all alone in this vast universe with no one understanding my struggle. Thank you so much. Mary

phillygrl February 25, 2013 at 7:06 am

First, LOVE YOU for coming back and hope that you will always take the space and time you need to be able to keep doing so. Its got to be daunting at times to have so many of us looking to you ! None of us can ever thank you enough ! And I hope you will vent to us too when u need it! ;)

Huge, baby, ugly cry, tears still rolling down my face as I read your post. My heart is pounding as your words hit every note perfectly. I WANT to be able to say all those things one day ! I just cant even picture it. Its like a foreign language still and Ive been reading this website for YEARS! haha Even after all the encouragement (shout out Lina!) and success I see on here, I cannot picture having a life back again.

But, because of your efforts and bravery, I will keep moving and breathing and, literally, cheering when I see another woman find her “answer”. <3<3 to the Sisterhood of HL

Annette February 26, 2013 at 6:19 am

This is beautiful… I am so happy you have finally found PEACE… You have given SO MUCH hope to all of us. Without you, a lot of us ladies would not have found solutions. I am still in limbo – my hairloss is doing a bit better – don’t “need” to do anything…yet… But the knowledge I have found on here is amazing – I would NEVER have known about bonding, what kind of wigs (if/when I need to purchase one) are out there! You have helped me and so many others face this unfair (and YES, it is unfair) problem. But, “who said life was fair?” I love Shawshank Redemption, by the way – one of my most favorite movies…. God Bless You for all you’ve done for us… Annette xo

admin February 26, 2013 at 3:33 pm

Thank you all for your amazing, touching, kind and supportive comments!

@livingthiswithyou – I love the girl from down under, she’s very inspiring! I also like the freedom that wig wearing provides in being able to pull your hair off and give your scalp a really good scratch and rub :)

@Ann – Yes indeed, it is a choice and one I was not alway successful in making but the past is the past and I’m all about looking forward! :)

@Angie T – Thank u.

@Maria – I’m so glad this post helped you!

@Lina, Eva and Jacqui – Thank you! You and your girls inspire, and you’re living proof that it’s never to late to make a change. You lived with this for 25 years before pulling the rug out from the hold that hair loss had on you, and I often think of you when I raise one of my many glasses of wine I consume, in happiness that you are an amazing success story, along with so many others. It’s not easy choosing to move forward because we just don’t want to let go, but you, me and a whole bunch of other gals here are proof that there is life after hair loss!

@moonstruck – I look forward to that day too!

@Chris – Thank you

@Mary – I’m so so happy you have found support here. I always felt that the only thing worse than having to deal with hair loss at 21 was thinking I was the only girl that this was happening to. It was a torment that affected greatly. We are not alone in this, we have each other to talk to and support one another.

@phillygrl – Thank you! You have moved forward more than you realize. Every post you read, every comment you make, everytime you strive or desire to want more for yourself… you are moving forward, so be proud of that! If you asked me at most points in my hair loss journey if I would be where I am today, I would laughed and said “ya whatever.” I never thought.. never that I could accept my situation in the way that I have. So while you cannot picture having your life back, I assure you, it’s there and it’s waiting for you!

@Annette – Thank you. Having the knowledge of what you CAN do if, you NEED to makes all the difference. It’s information that allows us to realize that if our worse case scenario presents itself, we have options, we have choices. Even though I didn’t act or do anything proactive towards wearing hair for years, I always felt comforted by seeing so many other women do it so successfully. It gave me hope that I could one day do it too.. and so I have :)

((HUGS))
XOXO

carol February 27, 2013 at 1:47 pm

I thought you were having success with the PRP treatments – have they stopped working? I am looking into that now after reading about it on here. That is a very poignant post, we want to believe hope springs eternal, but sometimes the reality is a dead end. Thanks for sharing your story.

(BTW, I sent a request to join last week and haven’t heard back – should I request again?)

suki March 5, 2013 at 1:28 pm

Y, I so agree with you, I can’t even put into words how much. I spent almost fifty (yes 50) years struggling with hair loss and letting it beat me down every time. Finally, I found a solution…or perhaps it found me. I spent two years grappling with accepting the idea of bonding, learning everything I could about it from the amazing Susan Falcone and then exploring every other avenue of hair replacement before I finally took the plunge. The hardest part was acceptance and once that happened, the rest was easy. Now I hardly ever think about my hair, I walk in the wind with my bonded bangs, I look in mirrors (something I’d avoided for those sad 50 years) and I truly have my life back. It’s not perfect, it doesn’t fix everything but it’s alot and it is more than enough. It’s not the answer for everyone but it is for me and I thank all the women I encountered on this web site — first and foremost you, Y– who helped me realize that I was not alone on this journey. I encourage anyone who is interested in bonding to ask me anything…I am far from an expert, having only bonded for two months but if there is anything at all I can do for any of my sisters, I am here!

Kristina March 22, 2013 at 7:07 pm

Thank you so much for those inspirational words and your message to me the other day. I am crying again, but mostly as a release right now. Holding on to what we were and what we used to look like is such a heavy burden because it doesn’t allow us to move forward at all. I feel like my whole adult life has been about learning to accept huge changes in my life and make changes. Even though decision making is a huge challenge for me.
I appreciate your words so much right now because I too have had big pity parties where i was the only attendee! Didn’t get me anywhere but more depressed and more importantly took away my power, my energy!
I’m glad to be back on WHLP to give and receive support.
XO <3

roca May 19, 2013 at 8:30 pm

Your story was really inspirational. Thank you for it.

I’ve neglected and ignored the fact that I’ve been losing my hair for a long time, perhaps over 15 years. And finally over the past two years or so decided to address it. I was in denial that it was getting worse. Now, my hair forced me to deal with it. I get so absolutely fed up with it every morning that I’m tempted to shave what’s left off! I’m still holding on, even though my hair isn’t.

This place helps me feel less alone about my hair loss. And for that, you’re all true sisters!

Johnny June 1, 2013 at 8:30 am

Beautifully written. Your words reflect my own thoughts and feelings as a young hair loss sufferer who has been devastated. Sometimes we all need to be reminded that we are not alone, and there is life after hair loss. It’s not perfect, but life isn’t perfect and that’s okay.

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