Saturday, May 15, 2010

Well, this doesn't seem fair

I'm losing my hair.

Have you ever heard someone say something like "These kids are going to make me lose my hair"?  I always thought that it was just a crazy thing that old people say.  Like when someone says that if you sneeze with your eyes open your eyeballs will pop out (that's not true, right?  Anyone willing to test it out?).  But, in reality, it seems like Maya is making my hair fall out.

 In clumps. 

And now I have bald patches. 

And pictures to prove it.

Before we get to the pictures, let's take a moment to dwell on how much this sucks.  I don't want to lose my hair.  I don't want to have giant bald patches.  I had a full on panic attack (with tears and a hysterical can't-catch-your-breath-hiccupy-kind-of-conversation with my mom) yesterday afternoon about it.  This morning I went it to the dermatologist, who said that I have alopecia areata (fancy latin name for bald patches, caused by an autoimmune response in which my body is attacking the hair).  She injected me like a million times (ok, somewhere between 35-60---I lost count because she kept talking to me) with cortisone, which will make my body stop attacking the hair follicles so that new hair can grow in.

My googling tells me that this type of hair loss is often caused by a major stressor a few months prior, which totally makes sense to me.  A few months ago I was cycling through the stages of grief, coming to terms with the fact that Maya's disabilities may not be as short lived as I had hoped.  I was depressed, I was finding a support group, I was changing her therapists.  I was kind of a mess for a few hours everyday.

But how unfair is that----that you go through a traumatic time, and then a while later lose your hair?!  What the hell.  Seriously.

So hopefully I'm going through a big shed, and the hair will come back rapidly.  Dave asked me yesterday (mid-panic attack) if I'm stressed about things now, and through my tears I laughed and pointed at my head and said "Yes!  My hair!"

But I've got to at least put it out here.  I often things of the Indigo Girls saying "You have to laugh at yourself, because you'd cry your eyes out if you didn't."  And so, expect balding jokes, people.  And, if things get any worse, expect some unique fashion statements (would it be weird to glue a flower to the top of my head?  or color my patches with magic marker?).

And now, pictures:

A bald patch in the front, along the part:  (try to ignore the frames without pictures that adorn our bathroom)

The biggest and scariest patch.  I hate to even look at this.  Thank goodness I'm fairly tall and have enough hair to change my part around and cover it.

Luckily, I still have a lot of hair.  And with some part maneuvering, I can minimize damage. 

If this is the worst that it gets, it's not really a big deal and somewhat funny.  But I'm kind of stressed out about it getting worse.  Oh crap, I'm not supposed to get stressed, it makes my hair fall out. 

Oh, irony.

Speaking of irony, I used the new clippers to shave (or attempt to shave) Parker today.  35 minutes in, I'm sweating, he's panting, there's so much fur in my bathtub that it looks like I killed a sheep, and he still looks like this:

I think he's taunting me.


anne said...

Does it help that maybe you'll save a little money at the hair dresser, not having to thin your hair out so much? But it looks like that money may need to go into Parker's hairdressing fund...

Amy said...

Oh man! I hope it comes back!! And Parker's haircut looks great! I literately LOL at "looks like I killed a sheep". Hope things start looking up!

Sara Collins-Sedey said...

I lost a lot of hair during a particularly stressful time a few years ago. It would come out in handfuls. The hair dresser would no longer straighten my hair. It was from stress and it sucked. I hope that your shots help and that it gets better soon! If it makes you feel any better, I was looking at your hair literally two days ago and thinking that you have great hair and that it looked great! Hang in there!

Dana said...

Thanks, ladies. It's still not too too bad, so it's a little bit funny. As more disappears, it may become less humorous!

Sara, I keep hearing from more and more friends who have experienced the same thing---I never would have thought it was so common. You have great, totally normal hair, so you give me hope :)