Hello and welcome to the small corner of the internet that has become this blog!
My name is Rosie and I’m 17. I’ve been living with alopecia for the last 5 and a half years. For people who don’t know what alopecia is, it is a skin condition where people lose various amounts of their hair. For some people, it may just be patches, but for some very lucky people like myself, it means losing everything – head hair, eyebrows, eyelashes, leg hair, every bodily hair I once had is gone. Now, in some cases, this is a huge bonus speaking as a 17 year old girl. But in others, not so much.
Throughout my ongoing treatment for my alopecia (which has had varying degrees of success over the years), my consultant and I have mapped out the times where I have gone through growth and loss of hair. Now, most triggers of alopecia are stress related, and after mapping out the times in my life where my hair has decided to make disappearances, we’ve discovered that my trigger is (dun dun duuun) exams! After every set of exams I have had in the last 6 years, I’ve lost my hair. Which is a complete pain, considering I’m in the middle of my A2 exams. Oh well.
I’m apparently a rather strange teenager in the way that losing my hair has never bothered me. For a 12 year old losing all her hair after her first year at an all-girls secondary school, you’d imagine a huge freak out about appearances. Not my style, really. I’ve always been really open about being bald, and when I lost my hair for the umpteenth time 2 years ago (after my Year 11 Prom) I was actually more comfortable looking in the mirror at a completely shaved head than my prom pictures sporting shoulder length hair.
Up to 2 months ago, I hadn’t even considered wigs. When I had first tried them when I was 12 they were awful, scratchy, uncomfortable things and the phrase I used was “like putting a mop on my head”. Then for no apparent reason, when my mum brought up the subject of wigs (“maybe you should have a look, you know, for university?”) I considered it. A week later, I was sat in my local prosthetics clinic trying on a selection. Bleach blonde through to dark brown, pixie cut through to waist length, straight through to curly, I tried the lot. And I had a surprising amount of fun. I picked out two that I liked (one short, one long) and went home quite excited. This was around the time that I had also started to pencil in my eyebrows, and so within the space of two weeks I had gone from the pale, eyebrow-less bandana-wearing girl to this new person sporting shoulder-length hair and perfect eyebrows.
So now everyone’s up to date on the short story of my alopecia journey so far, let’s get to the bloggy bit. I have a self-confidence that could fit in a thimble, and have always had that feeling of impending judgement from my peers lurking in the back of my mind. Since I’ve become the vain teenager that spends half an hour on her eyebrows and hair every day, I’ve wanted to share my alopecia story with other people, perhaps in the small hope that some 12 year old girl losing her hair will stumble upon my little blog and find some comfort in it. But being realistic, it will probably be a great source of entertainment for any readers because, although I want to blog about my ongoing alopecia journey, that journey also includes the dramatic life of a teenager. So look out for my mini life dramas as they are usually quite entertaining.
So there we have it, the first actual entry! I hope to be able to post reasonably regularly, although as previously mentioned, my A levels are looming and procrastination should not be in the form of a blog (it should always be in the form of YouTube or TV Series binge-watching).