by Madison Marko – Op-ed Editor
If you asked me for advice, I would tell you to shave your head. On December 20, my hair went from short to barely there. Perched in the salon chair, my family’s eyes ate at me like a vulture chowing down on its prey. The last words I heard before the big “snip, snip” were my grandma’s as she repeatedly whispered, “I cannot watch this. I simply cannot watch her do this.” Fast forward to a few short minutes later and she was hurriedly shuffling out the door.
Shaving my head was the best decision I have ever made. Since that fateful day, I have discovered that, for me, no hair means no insecurities, a greater appreciation for the small things in life, and more confidence.
I have been changing my hair from the day I came out of the womb. Every time I went into the hair salon I would ask for something different—and usually walked out looking like a younger variation of Justin Bieber. I was never satisfied or comfortable with my appearance.
Nonstop I would be tossing my bangs from face, running my fingers through my hair, wishing it curled up, instead of down, lay flat, instead of rolling at the ends. I either had fantastic or drop dead horrific hair days, and these made my emotions either drop or soar based upon how I felt my hair looked.
Now, every day is the best hair day of my life. I wake up with my hair looking virtually the same as when I went to bed. Shaving my head has helped me realize that my self-worth should not be based upon my hair—I know my worth, and it is greater than my physical appearance.
Shaving my head has also allowed me to focus more on the little, seemingly insignificant things. The way the wind feels when it rushes by my head, how my eyebrows twitch when I ask a question. I have noticed new things about myself and about the world around me simply by clearing my head—literally and figuratively—of worries that stemmed from my hair. As someone who genuinely appreciates the details, I cannot stress how amazing and eye-opening this is.
Being a self-proclaimed “bald baby” has given me so much confidence. I can walk down the halls knowing I am literally not hiding a single thing from those that pass me. You can see my lumpy head, the deeply ingrained bags under my eyes, my lopsided ears—all things that I have grown to love and accept about who I am.
By putting myself so unapologetically on display, I am saying, “accept me like this or not at all.” This statement has brought me closer to some people than ever before, and weeded out some negativity in my life.
But, this hair cut does not come without its repercussions. I mean, many people have probably just assumed my sexuality by now, only by looking at my hair. And based off that, they think they know “what I’m all about”. And that is ok with me. All they are doing is missing out on getting to know me on a deeper, more personal level. It makes the relationships I have more meaningful to know that these are the people who appreciate who I truly am.
And, not to mention, growing out a bald head… Not a quick journey. You have to be committed to the change, and accept that until the day you decide to grow it out, you will spend some time every couple weeks buzzing a razor across your head—which is actually very therapeutic, if you ask me.
Shaving my head has completely reinvented the way that view and act in my day to day life. It has eliminated my self-doubt, opened my eyes to things I was previously oblivious towards, and increased my confidence.
Why don’t you give it a try?