I was diagnosed with Alopecia at the age of 12. I love having my hair braided. It was so relaxing and peaceful for me. One night, my Mum noticed a bald spot at the base of my head. Two short weeks later, I was diagnosed with Alopecia Areata, an auto-immune disease resulting in hair loss.
We become pros at covering my bald spots: behind my ear, back of my head, on the side of my scalp, even my eyebrows. Until 2005, when one morning during Spring break of my sophomore year in high school, I showered and noticed more hair was falling than usual. 12 days later, I had lost about 80% of my hair.
By the time I was 19, I was living my life as 3 personas. The first was as a blonde. I had a blonde wig that I wore to work daily and people knew me as that. The second, a red-head. This wig was given to me and I wore it to my first class. I was known as the red-head as my freshman year of college. The third and final persona was me. Really me. Bald and beautiful me. Few knew me as who I really was. Eventually, I started letting people in and by doing do, freed myself.
By the time I was 21, I felt comfortable as beautiful, bald me. Of course there's been obstacles and speed bumps along the way but, without the support of family and friends I would't have the confidence I have now.
The love that people have shown, near and far, keeps me going. Knowing that I am accepted as bald is a beautiful and empowering thing.
I would just say to be true to yourselves. Be true to you, there's nothing you-er than you.
People that are inexplicably themselves happen upon success. If that person is bald, blonde or redhead- that's up to you. Coming from someone that tried on all those personas, there's no better feeling than coming home on a hot day and dropping that wig on the front counter and leaving it there.