Alo…..who?

Alopecia… one word that strikes dread through anyone who is told that they have it.

The hair – the crowning glory – slowly and then more rapidly makes a dramatic exit stage left, usually smiling up at you from the pillow or laughing at you from the shower drain. It is initially just a little concern. Is my hair a little thinner today? Creating more and more alarm as you notice that what was once manageable and easy to style, is becoming less and less.

There are many forms of alopecia, it’s a minefield to try to find out which one you have and what to do about it. Some are less severe than others, but all forms are a nightmare for the sufferer.

There are many causes. An initial visit to the doctor for blood tests will rule out illness – thyroid problems, hormone changes or lack of iron – leaving the sufferer deep in the unknown. Will it grow back? who knows! 75% of alopecia sufferers who lose hair through stress, pregnancy, shock, poor diet or a combination of these, will eventually see their hair return perhaps in 3 to 6 months or so. For the other 25%…….??

Stress, anxiety and pregnancy are the major causes of alopecia for women. The hair loss will start to show about 3 months after the initial cause of the stress and will unfortunately continue until the stress is removed, but, loss of hair causes anxiety, you worry and stress over the hair loss resulting in…… great!!

So what do you do?

1)  Cry
2) Cry a bit more
3) Try to hide the thin bits. This helps
4) Panic when the hair thins so much that you cannot hide the thin bits
5) Cry again (this serves no purpose at all!)
6) Eventually, give up and either live with the problem or buy a wig

There is nothing that removes your confidence more than a bad hair day. Living with that and worse every day is totally draining. The initial reaction once things start to get bad is to hide away. Who really wants to go outside with barely any hair and no confidence? It’s not a solution, but the reaction is understandable.

Vitamins and a good diet will help a little, but be prepared for the long haul, this is not a two week illness that will miraculously disappear.

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Estou a viver em mim próprio como num comboio a andar..

I didn’t board voluntarily, I didn’t have the choice and I don’t know the name of the destination. One day in the distant past I woke up in my compartment and felt rolling, it was exciting. I wished the train would never interrupt its journey.

I became aware: I cannot get off. I can’t change the tracks or the direction. I don’t determine the pace. I don’t see the locomotive and can’t see who’s driving it and whether the engineer makes a reliable impression. I don’t know if he is reading the signals correctly and notices if a switch is worked wrong. I can’t change the compartment. In the corridor, I see people passing by and think: Maybe it looks different in their compartment than in mine……

Night Train To Lisbon – Pascal Mercier

Stations

STATIONS
by Audre Lorde

Some women love
to wait
for life for a ring
in the June light for a touch
of the sun to heal them for another
woman’s voice to make them whole
to untie their hands
put words in their mouths
form to their passages sound
to their screams for some other sleeper
to remember their future their past.
Some women wait for the right
train in the wrong station
in the alleys of morning
for the noon to holler
the night come down.
Some women wait for love
to rise up
the child of their promise
to gather from earth
what they do not plant
to claim pain for labor
to become
the tip of an arrow to aim
at the heart of now
but it never stays.

Some women wait for visions
that do not return
where they were not welcome
naked
for invitations to places
they always wanted
to visit
to be repeated.
Some women wait for themselves
around the next corner
and call the empty spot peace
but the opposite of living
is only not living
and the stars do not care.
Some women wait for something
to change and nothing
does change
so they change
themselves.