I used to have really long blonde hair.(pics 1&2) It was long for 27 years. I hated getting it cut. Before grad school, I decided to go dark brown (I know, I know…pic 3). I loved having brown hair for a couple years. But after a while, I felt like I wasn’t really whole. Brown was nice, but it wasn’t me.
Then came #hairforhazel
I had watched so many people donate their hair and I decided that now was a good a time as any. I researched Locks for Love, found out they took dyed hair and made an appointment to chop off 10.5 inches. Everyone at work kept asking when I was going to do it. I had to psych myself up for it almost everyday. And when it came time, I closed my eyes and off it came.
I cried that night.
There are so many inspiration stories about #hairforhazel and TFiOS you could read on the internet. I could tell you that I felt empowered or that I didn’t look back and embraced my short hair, but I won’t. The truth is, I absolutely 100% hated my short hair.
When I looked in the mirror, someone else was staring back at me. My mom had to brush my hair for me because I couldn’t make it look ok. I cried before every work shift for about a week. I couldn’t even make a pony tail.
When people at work asked me if I loved it, I would squeak out a, “It’s ok.” or “Eh, I kinda like it.” What kept me from becoming a blubbering mess was that I knew my hair would be fashioned into a wig for someone who truly needed it. I was thankful for that, don’t get me wrong.
We just passed the year mark for #hairforhazel in August
My hair is blonde again and getting longer. It brushes against my shoulders and I can french braid it once more. It doesn’t hold curls and it takes more shampoo, but I love it. Long hair just in time for winter.
Would I do it all again?
Probably not. Not to say I regret chopping it off the first time.
Knowing that my hair grow enough that one day I can donate it again is something I am very thankful for. I could not imagine what life would be like relying on others for something so basic as hair for a wig.
I looked in the mirror for the first time in a year last week and thought, “Oh, there I am.” I am thankful for #hairforhazel; for the organizations that work hard to collect donations and for the humans that donate.
With the release of TFiOS on DVD, it’s hard not to reminisce about the past year and just how long it takes hair to grow.