This week has been really odd. I officially left compulsory education yesterday, and I feel like I shouldn’t be old enough to leave school. Where did half my teenage years go? It only feels like yesterday when I started at my secondary school as a keen little year 7, only just 11 years old and carrying a back pack that was practically the same size as me. A lot of my friends are now planning to go out and travel the world in their extended holiday before university terms begin, but I have moved straight into full-time work.
I’ve been extremely lucky and started a new summer job this week, working full-time hours on weekdays. I’ve only been there a week and already I absolutely love it. And I’m not just saying that out of fear my boss will one day read this through my Facebook. I’m currently doing admin work, which suits my organisational side perfectly. I did make one of the bosses laugh when I asked if I had to refer to them as Mr so-and-so or with their first names (apparently first names are fine, which I find a bit odd for a boss. Surely it sounds a lot more professional to say “oh I just have to email Mr Boss” instead of “oh I just have to email Dave”). Any how, I think I’ve settled in really quickly – everyone was so lovely and every days hi in the corridor and people have made the effort to actually come and introduce themselves. It’s very different from school, that is for sure.
No one at work knows about my alopecia or my wig. And what reason would they have to know? I’m not about to waltz into a new job and go “by the way, this hair is fake, I’m completely bald really. Oh and the eyebrows aren’t real either”, and no one has any reason to suspect that the hair on my head hasn’t been growing out of my skull for the last 17 years. This is definitely helped by the fact that the NHS wigs are fantastic. Everyone who knows it is a wig (so mainly my school friends and teachers) has commented on how realistic they look, and I didn’t fully realise quite how realistic they look until coming across Erin’s blog. She is another youth alopecia sufferer, who also uses a blog as her alopecia diary. I plan to use this blog in a similar way when I get something to record – I’m currently still at a hair count of zero. Actually, that’s a lie – I have found one eyebrow hair, and it’s not even in the same place as where I pencil them in. I don’t really want to pluck it after it’s made such an effort to get there, but it’s on the wrong part of my face so it has to go.
Back on the subject of the amazingness of NHS wigs, I wore my long wig to my Leavers Ball last night and I’ve had so many compliments. My make up alone took an hour and a half, eyebrows and eyelashes taking half that time between them. I was quite proud of my appearance last night (see picture), and the effort really paid off.