March 3, 2011

Surprising Myself

Tuesday night, I attended an activity celebrating the birthday of my church's Relief Society. The woman in charge of organizing the evening's festivities had requested a few weeks prior to the activity that we give her "interesting facts" about ourselves. I had a really hard time coming up with anything truly interesting and different, and the only thing I could think would stump most of the ladies was my Alopecia. Because I wasn't really sure at the time how this information was to be used, I decided to give her two facts: 1) "I can braid gum with my mouth," and 2) "I shave my head on a regular basis." I told her to choose whichever fact she felt best fit the occasion. (Little did I know, she would use both, but the gum-braiding wasn't a big deal to begin with.) I don't know what possessed me to reveal something so personal, but that was really the only thing I could think of that would set me apart from the other ladies in attendance.

As the night and the activity progressed, we got around to playing Jeopardy with the facts that the activity planner had collected. It was really fun to hear the many interesting things about the other women, but I was growing nervous of when my little tidbit of information would come up. Finally, someone chose my fact and I wondered if they would know right away who it was, or if it would be a shock. It was a multiple-choice question, and I think that given the fact that the "contestant" knew the other choices/women better, she figured out that by default, the correct answer had to be me. When she guessed correctly, I decided that I was going to "prove" my fact to be true. I lifted my wig to show my shiny dome and the small patches of hair that still need to be shaved away. I was very surprised at myself for being THAT open about my situation. Everyone was very kind and we just continued on with the game.

I think my biggest worry now is not that people are going to be weird in regards to my hair situation, but rather that they may think I was looking for some kind of attention. I'm certainly not that kind of person. I want people to know the "real" me, and sometimes it feels like the longer I hide behind my wigs, the harder it is to be without them. I guess I figured that in this instance, I knew the women would be accepting and there was no reason why I couldn't just put my bald head out there, and then move on.

Here's hoping that de-wigging myself was a good thing!


3 Happy Thoughts:

Saundra said...

You are beautiful, Amber!!

Erin said...

That was brave. But I think most people will understand and will be glad you were open. I don't think you would be interpreted to be looking for attention. Besides, they asked for info. You didn't just go up there and throw off your wig in the middle of the lesson or something. Way to be yourself. And I think you are gorgeous, even without your wig (or maybe esp? because it makes you unique).

Amber said...

Way to go! From a perspective of someone with a medical condition that causes too much hair, I think people would be pretty open minded. I hope. I think it's pretty obvious you're not an attention seeker. The best part is that you CAN choose to reveal your secret to people and when you do, they are surprised! It's not an, "Oh, yeah, I already noticed."