Fat Thigh-Roid Woes: Hairy Legs, Bald Head
I used to have super long and curly hair back in the day. When I was younger, I paired it with a bitchin’ blazer sporting confident shoulder pads, and would take sexy pictures with my hair over my shoulder. Complete with untouched, not-so-much-envy-producing carpeted eyebrows. I used to whine about “damn, I have too much hair, it’s too hot” and now – I could slap myself for even entertaining that thought. I started to love my hair in my later years, after high school, and just as soon as I accepted my tresses with open arms – they were taken from me.
Thanks to Graves, my hair became sparse and Ben Franklin-ish. I tried to keep it long and the curls became wilted has-beens, their time up and ready to be snipped. Didn’t matter if I used every humidity defying product on the market, a diffuser, and tears – they just didn’t want to do anything but split, dry, and clog my sink and shower. I tried in vain to hold onto them, but what was the point?
I’ve always been adventurous when it came to my hair, and getting a cut wasn’t a big deal. I even let a drunk friend once chop it off to my shoulders at a party, and it didn’t come out bad at all. I figured, it’ll all grow back and in the meantime I have something new to play with!
Well, this time around I wasn’t so sure it was going to grow back, and I was in tears daily about the loss of hair at 30 years of age. It came out in clumps, and I tried to hide the bald spots – but when the wind decided to do what it does best…which is blow…it was no use. I had many visions of going full force with it. Shaving half my head while laughing psychotically, standing on top of a tower like a madwoman OR rockin’ the Natalie Portman “V for Vendetta” thing – but alas, my features are way too strong to pull off that look. Also, I was STILL having to wax my bushy brows, and pluck random, unrelenting strays from my body. Why couldn’t those assholes go too??? Graves is a cruel and twisted bitch.
I gave in, held my head high, and decided on a pixie cut – and was pleasantly surprised. I did get a lot of comments though, “why did you do that??” and “younger women should have long hair” and “holy shit, when did you come out of the closet??”
I spent my high school years wearing bigger clothes to cover my huge ass, thighs and belly. Not for the purpose of announcing that I was a lesbian, but only cause my mom convinced me baggier clothes fool people into thinking you’re smaller than you are…. “It covers your butt and no one knows how big it is.” Mmm ok. I got over that logic by mid-college. I denied being gay, but people didn’t believe me. Combine that with my aggressive personality, and the L was branded onto my XXL Hanes shirt by the 10th grade.
Well now, sporting my new ‘do – I’ve just “confirmed” long held beliefs. Whatever though, adding fuel to the gay fire was really the least of my concerns – I wasn’t in a position to date anyone at this point, so it didn’t really matter. The haircut kinda demanded that I wear more makeup though. I kept my hair at that length for about a year, and just recently it’s started to grow out into an awkward mullet. I don’t give a shit anymore. I’ve learned to let go of the vanity, and just DEAL. The most unexpected part of the whole experience was, I shed more tears before the cut. Once I embraced the pixie, and learned to work with it – I felt a lot better about my looks.
It’s almost like letting go of it let me focus on the more important stuff – my health. Also, it sounds a bit cliche, but you know how we crave haircuts when a change in our life needs to be made? Duh, everyone remembers Felicity. I’m watching my new virgin hair come in, 6 months after RAI, and it’s a color I haven’t seen in years. My natural plus some gray on the temples, and I’m enjoying the story it tells. It’s telling me about my past experience (hey, grays!) and also starting on with the new. It FEELS healthier now, and I refuse to color it. Maybe I’ll change my mind in the future, but right now it’s about my health and my hair is just along for the ride. I stand in front of my mirror, smiling like a jackass, and holding my new locks. It’s a reminder of the battle that has almost been won – also, why have I been hiding my natural color for so long? I love it!
I know a lot of you out there are dealing with hair loss due to Graves – so I’m curious to know how you’re coping with it. Has it been a major concern, or more on the back burner when dealing with so many other shitty symptoms?
Tags: bald head, Dear Thyroid columns, dry hair, Fat Thigh Roid Woes, Fat thigh-roid Woes written by Nicole Wells, Graves disease column, graves' disease, hair loss, hairloss, hairy legs, how do you deal with hair loss, how does hair loss emotionally affect you, hyperthyroidism, split-ends, thyroid related hair issues