As a registered nurse, alopecia was never a condition/illness that I had heard of. Well, little did I know that I’d know more about alopecia than any other condition or illness.
It all started after my husband and I decided to start trying for a 3rd child. I noticed hair missing on the periphery of my hairline, in the back of my head in August of 2004. I decided to go to my doctor to make sure I was “healthy” before we hopefully became pregnant. He said “Oh, it’s just alopecia. It’ll grow back” and so it did, multiple times. After we had our 3rd son in the summer of 2006, there appeared to be increased hair loss within the next year.
I saw a dermatologist and the “spots” seemed to respond to steroid injections….for a while. 1 year later in 2008, after it stopped responding, my dermatologist started me on a combination of Prednisone and Methotrexate. I was wearing hats constantly, putting hair extension clips in to cover up patches and just trying to “blend in” (not wanting to be “different”). I had increased my steroid dose to 40mg a day for 5 months, without success. My doctor told me there was nothing else he could do. I was devastated. I had always had a thick head full of naturally curly hair, that I’d pull the brush through, rather harshly, to get out all the knots. It actually really annoyed me at the time, but oh, to have that hair back would be nice.
I had finally become so sick of my condition and feeling so out of control with my hair loss, that with my husband gone on a business trip, I took control back and shaved my head. I had just had it! Needless to say my husband was slightly shocked when he came home (although very supportive☺). After that, my hair just never grew back. I had already been wearing multiple wigs,that were itchy, uncomfortable and didn’t stay on properly (none of them felt or looked natural). I was constantly adjusting them and they never allowed me to forget I was bald (which is all I ever wanted to do). In my mind, I tried to get through my situation by telling myself, “well, at least my children are healthy; that’s all that matters” or “it’s just hair”….but deep down I struggled, ALOT. After all, was it really “just hair?” I finally realized it wasn’t vanity that I was experiencing; it was the loss of my “old self”. I wanted to be the woman my husband married, the daughter my parents had raised and the mom “with hair” at school pick up and most importantly, someone I recognized in the mirror and was confident with. I wanted to be like everyone else and live my life with hair!
On a trip home to visit my parents in Wisconsin, I met another woman affected with alopecia who had a Freedom Wig. I had never heard of them before and she talked about how comfortable it was and it looked so great on her—so natural! I ordered my first Freedom Wig in 2010 and have never looked back. It was so comfortable, looked and felt so authentic and I felt “like my old self”.
People are surprised when I tell them that I wear a wig. I am now free to be myself and am confident with that person again. I can live my life and don’t have to hold my hair on in the wind and can go on a roller coaster at Disneyland (my husband was a little nervous for that one☺). It has literally changed my life for the better. I can be an active woman wearing my Freedom Wig; hiking, skiing, swimming, running around with kids, and going to baseball and soccer games. I don’t have to miss out on any activities, like I was. It has literally allowed me to Live My Life again…. with Freedom Wigs!