I was born on a rainy September afternoon 4 weeks before my due date, only 4lbs 5oz…which was mostly the weight of my hair. Not really, but probably pretty damn close. I have been blessed with an incredibly thick head of hair that grows at an alarming rate. My two defining characteristics have always been, being really short (I prefer petite) and having very long, dark, and thick tresses.
Growing up I kept my hair relatively long (let’s give big props to my mom for washing that mane many days a week for many years of my life…being a mother now, and battling my own children to wash their hair, I know what a feat this would have been.) I would usually wear it in braids like Anne of Green Gables, or in a peppy ponytail. Sometimes, my mom would put my hair in pigtail braids, which were basically two ponytails on each side of my head that where then braided. Can you picture it? Relatively cute hairstyle for the early 90’s right? Apparently I didn’t think it was quite cool enough, because during the course of the school day, I would take out one of the braids, that’s right, only one, and then would have a fashion forward (not) high ponytail on one side of my head and high braid on the other. And this was only one of my many hair related blunders throughout my adolescence. I basically tried out every haircut under the sun including the “the Rachel” from “Friends” as well as a hideous short bob that made me look exactly like a mushroom. I wish I had some pictures to show you the hideousness but alas, I grew up in the age where you needed a real camera with real film that you had to have developed and therefore the evidence isn’t easily accessible. Damn the luck! 😉
So, to the point of this whole post…since I have been blessed with such long luscious locks, I decided many years ago that I should put those strands to good use by donating my hair ever year or so. I just recently grew out my hair to my waist and then chopped it all off so I could donate it to Locks of Love.
If you’re not familiar with Locks of Love, they are an AMAZING organization that creates hairpieces for children who suffer from any type of medical hair-loss (cancer, alopecia, etc.) They are a non-profit and provide the hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children for free. They provide hairpieces for both boys and girls of all races, creeds, and religions. In my opinion, they are a tremendously important organization to support. According to their website “There are several problems facing children who suffer long-term medical hair loss. Most wigs sold by retailers are made to fit adult heads, and are much too big for children to wear. They often require the use of tape or glue to keep them from falling off, and these adhesives can burn or irritate the scalp. Often, the styles of adult wigs are not age-appropriate and synthetic wigs can mat and frizz with excessive styling.” With their help and the help of their donors, they are able to provide hairpieces to children who otherwise, might not have any other options.
It’s a magnificent organization and I feel so honored to be able to donate hair to them on a relatively regular basis. The first time I donated my hair was the day after my wedding. I grew my hair out to waist length and wore it curly for my wedding day, then the next day, I had it all cut off just in time for our Honeymoon to Antigua. Now, I have to be honest, this wasn’t all about helping the kiddos from Locks of Love…It was partially about not wanting to have to deal with 500lbs of hair that would poof up to the point I wouldn’t be able to fit through doorways from the humidity. I would say it was 50/50 in my decision, maybe 60/40…ok 80/20.
I donated it again soon after I had my son and once again after I had my daughter. This most recent time makes for #4 and counting!
I spend a lot of time complaining about my long thick hair. It takes hours to blow dry and style, it get’s frizzy, it gets tangled, it is heavy and it can be a regular pain in the ass. When I have it grown out, you probably wouldn’t know it because I live in a mom ponytail or messy bun at home and a sleek bun at work. Very occasionally, I take the 2+ hours to blow dry and straighten it and I mean VERY occasionally. The before picture below (with the Snapchat filter) is the only picture I could find of my hair straightened since I had my daughter. It just takes so much effort for a working mama of two.
With all of my complaining, I have realized that I must acknowledge the very luck genes I was dealt to have this magnificent mane of mine. There are so many people who are not so fortunate due to their genetics, medical conditions, medical treatments, and other reasons. I am learning to love my luscious locks and especially love the opportunity it affords me to send those locks off to those who need them.
If you would like to donate your own hair or make a financial donation or just learn more about Locks of Love, you can visit their website here Locks of Love 💕