Baring it All! - Going Bald for Cancer Research UK

What would you give to see me lose all my long hair?

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

A blog dedicated for bald-headed fundraising!

Entry from my sister site 'Words that Flow', yesterday. Transferred here today, to allow dedication to the cause:

I've been having a big think about something my friend, Zena, said when I visited at the weekend. She was really pleased her hair hadn't started falling out, yet, after her 2nd chemo. Apparently it's more likely after the 3rd. One of her sisters was there too, and she'd brought round a nifty hat for when it happens. Anyway, what I was thinking about was what it must be like to lose your hair. Although hair is just hair, people fashion it, like clothes, to project their identity. What happens, when you are feeling the lowest of the low, knocked out by chemicals zooming round your body, targeting 'hotspots' of new growth (including hair and nails)?

Jeez! I've had my hair in every outgoing style - dyed it red, orange, yellow, green (never managed blue, since it doesn't seem to 'take' in my hair). I've had hair standing straight up; backcombed in the 80's; permed into zig-zags; plaited down my back (currently my alternative style); and down when it behaves itself- it has a lovely wave just after it's been washed (the envy of a fair few people, I've been told :-)).

Well, thinking along these lines, I realised how much of my identity is tied up in my hair. Cancer happens to many people, unfortunately, and affects them profoundly simply by being there. How much worse, I thought, to then lose your hair when you are feeling at your worst!
Now, to the point - I've been thinking for a while what I can do to raise money for cancer research. I've known so many people affected by it's impact on their lives, or those of a loved one. I would like to do something that means something to me, in how it reflects the illness. I'm considering the London 'Moon Walk' (Saturday19th May 2007 - registrations in by 23rd December 2006, or sooner if the places get filled! See link in sidebar under Randolf the monkey! ), but I'd like to do something more personal to me. It occurred to me that one thing I could do, which would put me closer to the position of understanding how it felt to lose your identity when going through chemo, and also to symbolise that temporary loss of hair whilst using the treatment (as a hopefully positive step towards healing).... would be (dare I say it in words and commit myself?) to shave my head of all my gorgeous tresses!!!

Now, I value my hair, and I really (really!) wish I hadn't thought of this as a fund-raising effort, but now I have, I find that it is an appropriate thing to do. I surely am not the first to think of this, and definately won't be the last, but I have such a lot of hair to lose!!! At present, it's nearing waist length. And to be honest, I don't know how I'd feel if it wasn't there. However, the seed of idea has been planted...

Now, my problems are

  1. I need to reach as many people as possible, to raise the profile of this prospective event (I believe I may contact one of the cancer research charities, and see if they can help) - so, some sort of advertising
  2. I would need to make available some method for people to sponsor/ donate directly to the charity, and for some way of that total figure to be recorded
  3. A target figure should be ascertained (how much would it be worth to people to see me go bald? :-D )
  4. hmmm, I'm sure there must be other things I haven't thought of...

I'm hoping someone out there might have some answers or ideas of how I can go about this. Seeing as Zena's going through this struggle, I'd kind of like to keep her company (we could be a couple of baldies together!! :-))

So, if you think of something, drop me a line (you can always get in touch via 'comments'). I'm going to get some photos of what my wonderful head of hair looks like now... I'm hoping there's enough malicious cackling out there to make this worth while...

So, watch this space, and be ready to pass the word on... :-)


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