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Scheherazade in Blue Jeans
freelance alchemist
I feel like it shouldn't matter that I've lost half my hair. I feel… 
3rd-Dec-2009 08:22 am
I feel like it shouldn't matter that I've lost half my hair. I feel like feeling wounded over this is a vanity thing that I should be able to suck up and get over.

But it matters. Because, as I posted not long ago, my hair is a big part of my identity, and it's one of my favorite parts of me.

35 pounds down in a few months = losing half my hair. And when I realized how fast I was losing weight again, I tried hard to slow it down, but to no avail.

My hair goes in layers from the bottom of my bra strap to midback. When I get my first paycheck, it will be cut to maybe shoulder-length, so when it grows back it won't be all thick on top and thin in the middle and ends. And, like in 2003-4 when this first happened, I will spend some time not looking like myself.

I wish I didn't find that quite so unsettling.
3rd-Dec-2009 01:32 pm (UTC)
I hear ya. Not on the loss, so much, but on the hair=identity thing.
3rd-Dec-2009 01:34 pm (UTC)
My hair is immensely thinner than it was when I was younger, and it matters, and it makes me sad. This icon might give you some idea.

So, yeah, I understand too well how much it matters, and I don't blame you for feeling this way at all!
3rd-Dec-2009 01:37 pm (UTC)
Hair is a huge, huge part of identity. It took me six months to get up the nerve to cut my hair from butt-length to chin, and I physically had to do that because I couldn't take care of it anymore. And it really was a transformational thing - I wasn't the same person inside after the accident, and cutting my hair was the external recognition of that. It didn't take me as long as I thought it would to get used to it, and now I love it, but damn it was *hard*.

So yeah, I get it. It's not vanity, especially when the change is being effectively forced on you by medical crap. It's like all the clothes in your closet suddenly transmute to pink frippery with rhinestones.

I'm babbling. Too early for commenting. Hi.
3rd-Dec-2009 02:06 pm (UTC)
So yeah, I get it. It's not vanity, especially when the change is being effectively forced on you by medical crap

3rd-Dec-2009 01:38 pm (UTC)
I totally understand where you are coming from. I am losing hair in almost-clumps. :P
3rd-Dec-2009 01:41 pm (UTC)
Is the weight loss due to the gluten intolerance?

I feel you though. I thought my weight loss would stop after I discovered the dairy intolerance but it must be something else on top of it because I keep losing. Down 20 lbs, and now I'm barely 115 for 5'10. And while that has always been more or less the case, I liked being pretty in the face.
3rd-Dec-2009 01:43 pm (UTC)
It probably is, and I think I've almost stabilized. Still. :(
3rd-Dec-2009 02:05 pm (UTC)
*hugs* I know that feeling. Going to short hair after long for so long was not a happy thought. But with my hair constantly coming out in clumps with no projected end in sight (yay medication :P), I didn't see an alternative. So I decided to make it a *really* good cut.

I've been going to the same stylist (as in, if she's not there, I won't get my hair cut that day) for a while, and so every 2 months, I go in and tell her to "have fun". Not that you'll be *keeping* yours short - but if you have a stylist that you trust who knows your hair really well, s/he should be able to create a cut that will suit you well both face and personality.

My cut last night? Best yet!
3rd-Dec-2009 02:27 pm (UTC) - I will re-recommend my hair guys
I think you'd get along well with them and they know how to treat people who like their long hair.

14A Elliot St
Harvard Sq

Tell them I sent you.
3rd-Dec-2009 05:13 pm (UTC) - Re: I will re-recommend my hair guys
Tried 'em once; they fail at curly hair!
3rd-Dec-2009 02:36 pm (UTC)
This happened to me too. (Er...is happening. But saying that is even worse.) It's awful. I'm sorry. Don't beat yourself up over the fact that something painful and difficult is hurting you.
3rd-Dec-2009 02:50 pm (UTC)
*empathizes* My hair started falling out while I was depressed, and it's still much thinner than it had been. Plus, my weight has been fluctuating. I need a different sort of cut for now, because the less thick my hair is, the fatter my face looks. I can't cut it too short if I want to cover up the scar on my neck. I might go today to the hairdresser around the corner, but I really don't have the time.

Anyway, yeah; it isn't about vanity, it really is about not being "you" anymore, at least on the outside.
3rd-Dec-2009 02:50 pm (UTC)
Oh honey I'm so sorry. I have a hard time seeing you with short hair, although I'm sure it will look fabulous on you, I get the whole hair=identity thing. I'm sorry this is being forced on you.
3rd-Dec-2009 03:30 pm (UTC)
What, you lost 35 pounds since I last saw you? That doesn't sound good at all, given that you've never been very large to begin with. Hope you can get some of the hair and some of the weight back.
3rd-Dec-2009 05:18 pm (UTC)
Bite your tongue. I still need to lose about 10 pounds!
3rd-Dec-2009 03:43 pm (UTC)
Maybe try shortening it a little at a time, to get used to the shorter length? You know, take off an inch a week (someone handy with scissors but not necessarily a stylist per se), and then when you're close to shoulder-length, go to the stylist.

I know precisely what you mean about your hair, and I know why it's so important to you. It's hard to look at yourself in the mirror and it's not what you expect. But just keep focusing on that it's a temporary thing, and that it *will* grow back.

PS, unrelated to this: Elayna was in my dream last night. Tell her not to drive any red Mazda Miatas, okay? :)
3rd-Dec-2009 04:37 pm (UTC)
In a way, I very much understand this.
I have a birthmark on my left shoulder that is over an inch in diameter, dark (I'm quite pale), raised, wrinkled and has odd edges. This description is also a list of "What to look for: this may be cancer". But throughout my childhood, I was teased about it so much. ("Is that $hit on your back?") It took me a looong time to incorporate this birthmark into my image of myself; to make it a part of who I am. So much so that I don't want it removed. I *have* spoken to my general practice doc about it - as it doesn't *change* size or shape except as my body changes with weight and hormones, she's allowed me to keep an eye on it with her.
But I'm aware the day may come when I have to have it removed. The adjustment to that will be terrifying.
Good luck on your journey.
3rd-Dec-2009 04:43 pm (UTC)
*hugs and much sympathy*

I think I've seen you rockin' the bandana look successfully, we can do it together. :)
3rd-Dec-2009 05:16 pm (UTC)
Speaking as someone who shaved her head last night...

Hair is a particularly powerful thing, even outside vanity, as it is part of our face. We humans tie a lot of our social interaction to facial expressions, and hair is a part of all that.

Believe me, I get it.

I've shaved my head three or four times in my life, partly as a way to sever myself from my image. It's not that I dislike how I look or how I think I look. It's just that I have a personal philosophy that you should occasionally fuck shit up, just to get a fresh perspective. Shaving my head is an absurdly easy way for me to do that.

Also, I used to have hair-model hair. Perfectly straight, shiny, chestnut hair that fell past my waist. I had it for 23 years. I cut it all off one day so I could spend a month in the Arctic doing biology research. In fact, the hair I cut off paid for much of my camping equipment.

I've never looked back -- having short hair suited my face and my lifestyle far better than the long hair ever did. But would I have discovered that if I hadn't cut it all off? Possibly not.

I'm not saying you should shave your head or cut your hair short or anything. I'm just saying that perhaps this is an opportunity of some sort.

Edited at 2009-12-03 05:18 pm (UTC)
3rd-Dec-2009 05:20 pm (UTC)
*nods* I have had it short before, and it really, really does not suit my face at all. :(
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