||[Aug. 10th, 2010|02:32 am]
Ok, ok, I know I don't post near as much since I discovered facebook. And, looking back, I realise that the quality of even my stream-of-consciousness posts are going WAY downhill. So, I'll try to make an effort here.
I have bitched, moaned and whined about alopecia on here. When I finally want to sit down and have a rant, it's inflicted on my LJ f-list. Sorry about that, folks.
Even though I was posting around the Easter weekend about various matters that crossed my mind, I never stopped to mention something interesting I discovered nearly 4 months back. I found a teeny-tiny hair on one of my cheeks.
First there was one. Then there were 2, and I knew where they were. I carefully noted any others as I noticed them. I could generally only feel them, but as time went on, I began to notice tiny colourless wispy little hairs sticking out from my cheeks. At first, I could only notice them in soft lighting; generally speaking, it's still the best light for me to see them, but I can see some in harder lighting now.
One of the reasons I didn't post was because I'm still a believer in certain rules of 'magic', which could be phrased as 'managed optimism', or 'story control'. Basically, I believe that a story loses its power with the more people you tell. You also lose more and more control over how the story is spun out to others. I wasn't ready to diseminate this news to the world at large; I was more excited about telling friends in person. (For one, the internet at large can't stroke my cheek, and I was looking as much for validation that these few, solitary hairs existed... also, you know, people stroking my cheek. Nothing pervy, it's just nice)
The appearance of these hairs is, fundamentally, a good thing. It means that whatever my body needs to do to get hair back is being done. The detail I wasn't so hot on was that it was on my freaking cheek. Yeah, thanks nature. Don't stop... Really, don't. If you stop now, I'm just stuck with a minor electrolysis bill with some false hopes. However, Nature, thank you for reminding me of the feeling of a hair blowing in the wind, even if it is one single hair, and even if it's not on my scalp, I haven't experienced that sensation in far too long.
I'm still on good terms with the stubble - it's colourless, and downey - it's kinda nice. Once it becomes anything that hints at beings a beard, I cut it, but until then, I can live with it; it doesn't itch, and it's soft. Since then, I've lost count of how many live in the 'sideburn' area.
I also have a little fuzz on the ears themselves. I don't care about that one way or the other, I never have had hairy ears, and I don't expect it'll suddenly become an issue. It's bearly worth mentioning, but in the spirit of full disclosure, why not?
All this personal and follicular growth has made me a wee bit hyper-sensitive. "I feel a tingle! It feels like something could be growing RIGHT THIS MINUTE. Could this be the next site?" Thankfully most of this remains as thought, and I talk myself right down again, trying to make myself see reason, and to be patient; the next sprouting will happen when it does, and I'll notice it when I'm ready.
So, for the last month, when I'd be out in the open air, I'd occasionally feel like a single hair was being blown in the wind. Whenever I put my hand to it, I couldn't find it, so I wrote it off as my imagination running wild. Turns out it really was a hair flickering. Unfortunately, not even all the soft lighting in the world will allow me to see the back of my head, so I didn't see it for a while. It turns out the trick wasn't to find the hair with my hand, but to let the hair find my hand.
If you're confused by that mountain/*censored* parallel, try this: run your hand over your other arm (or leg, if it has hair), just high enough to tickle the hairs, but not close enough to touch the actual skin. Can you feel it? Of course you can, if there's hair, you'll feel it. That's what hair is for. It's a weird feeling when you lose that tiny little aura (it's especially weird when it's patchy). That's how I found the hair, it announced its presense as I ran my hand over it.
So it turns out I have a little furry patch at the back of my neck. In case you haven't been following the general trend here - this really is good news. For once, I don't have mixed feelings. This is something that's happening in the general area that might generally associated with the scalp.
I also got a glimpse of it in a public toilet. If I craned my neck into uncomfortable positions, I could see the tiny hairs glowing in the soft lighting, and there were more than I could count. That's got me happy.
Given that the hair loss was pretty much geometric (the scientist in me will NOT let me call it exponential without hard figures), I wonder if re-growth might be similar. Again, I can't let myself get too optimistic, but it's a good sign. What's more, I think I'm ready for it.
It's funny, it was only recently that I stopped thinking of myself as having dark hair. No, really, it sounds silly, but I realised that as far as the colours I wear are concerned, I have no allegiance to hair colour. I don't care what colour it grows back in. I don't care if it's grey. Hey, I don't even care if I don't get hair on my scalp, so long as I'm not in a half-way house; half-covered and half-not; shaving that would be a pain. But if I was to sacrifice the prospect of any future growth so that I could ensure growth just two areas - I'd give it all up to have growing, live eyebrows and eye-lashes to call my own. Unfortunately, I doubt that I'm likely to see them reappear (something tells me they're finicking little bastids). Still, I'm not going to live or die by their presense.
So, all in all, that's my semi-scheduled alopecia braindump. For once, it might actually be a bit positive rather than my usual, "Ok, I'm going to scream into the blogosphere that I have no hair, and that while I put on a brave face about it, and really am OK most of the time, I sometimes really just don't like it". Speaking of which, have I done my annual, "Don't call me f**king brave; I'm not sick, I'm not dying and, most importantly, I'm not a f**king teenager, so don't you dare f**king call me brave" rant? Note to self, must post that some time. (For some reason, in my head, that rant took on the mental voice of Amy Pond's predecessor)
Bravery rants and all else aside, with this, and a change in jobs in the next while... things are looking good.