Part 2: The Big Shave

Posted on Posted in Embracing Baldness, Embracing Love

I have alopecia! This means I live with hair loss. The number of U.S. women experiencing some form of hair loss is 21 million. Relevant Research, Inc. International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery 7.8.2014 My scalp is covered with bald spots so I shave my head weekly.

My life changed the day I walked through the barbershop door with my husband holding my trembling hand. It was difficult to sit in the chair and whisper to the barber that I needed him to cut my shoulder length locs off. He looked confused. I knew if I repeated myself, I would break down so I just closed my eyes and listened for the hum of the clippers.

As I sat there that Saturday morning looking at a shop full of men and their sons, I was terrified of what they were thinking. One child innocently asked his father, “Why is that lady cutting her hair off?” That pained me to my core. I felt exposed and ugly.zIMG_0407e

Thankfully, my husband Don, came over to me and asked me if I was okay. I nodded my head and motioned for him to sit down. I did not want to lose it in front of all those men and boys. I silently watched each loc hit the floor, wondering what the guys were saying about me to each other.

After it was all done, Don gave me a big kiss on the top of my head in front of everyone. Since that act of love unraveled me, I walked out without acknowledging anyone, to include the barber.

I sat in the car sobbing for a good 15 minutes while Don comforted me with loving words. His words gave me a bit of strength. I was so hyper conscience of now being bald, for real. The more I thought about it on the ride home, the harder I cried. Don continued to affirm my beauty and how much he loved me. No matter how many times he said, I didn’t believe him.

I thank God my husband was sensitive to the fragility of my nerves and the raw emotions I was experiencing. His unwavering love that day assured me that he didn’t need me to have hair to be beautiful in his eyes. If only I could believe his words.

It took me three years before I shared with others that I had hair loss. I pretended I was bald by choice. Once I took that mask off, I was finally able to receive my husband’s love fully and without doubt. His love saved me during this identity crises and I am thankful he still loves me bald-head and all.

Share a time when your boyfriend or husband’s love carried you through an emotional situation.