7 Surprising Side Effects of Shaving My Head

27 Oct

When I decided to shave my head to raise funds to buy PPE for NHS staff, I expected nothing except some teasing and to feel too nervous to check the mirror for a while. What I did not expect were the following:

1. Extra Available Cash

During my first shower after the shave I realised that it was going to be much quicker than usual, having no hair to wash, condition, and comb through, thereby saving on electricity and water; the shampoo would last for a year; and who needed conditioner any more? Not me. Furthermore, my hairdryer is gathering dust, saving more electricity. 

The Hub fully supported my naked bonce, not least because a passing thought/joke to frighten him took on a life of its own:

TB: If we’re going to be in lockdown, I think I’ll shave my head.

Hub: If that’s the case, then you should do it for charity.

TB: … …

TB: … …

TB: …um, I’ll think about it…

Hub: [To himself] Tee hee hee. I am and always will be the Master Prankster here.

2. Confidence

I expected to feel like a fool: I knew that this was never going to be my best look but I was prepared to endure it for a good cause. I suspected people might think I was a right-wing thug, or I’d had a really bad case of nits.

But there was something about letting go of my inhibitions enough to cut off my not-so-crowning glory that sheered off my vanity at the same time. It helped that I have the long-time love of a good man (when he’s not calling my bluff) and the knowledge that I would be mostly indoors for three months, but still…hair is an important part of identity, and dramatically changing that identity changes us.

I once had a genuine identity crisis when I learned I was two inches taller than I had believed myself to be for thirty-one years, because how I saw myself had fundamentally changed, even though outwardly, nothing had changed. This time, however, the outward had changed, and I didn’t care that it was unflattering: it freed me of the burden of pretending that I can fight off the ravages of childbearing and chocolate, and I JUST DIDN’T CARE. 

3. No More Menopause Shower Hair

Nobody told me before I started the change that my hair was going to fall out from time to time. I spent many months secretly irritated with Alex because he left so much hair in the drain – secretly, because he was only home between semesters and I wanted him to want to return home every time and fulminating glances across the bannister would have been counterproductive. Then he moved out for good and the hair was still there and then I read a list of menopause symptoms which included hair loss.

Well! If you’ve never seen an indignant menopausal woman before, I assume you’re still alive. WHY did nobody ever mention this to me before?

Anyway, first shower after The Shave, I bent down to *shudder alert* pull out the disgusting gunk…and there was none!

I was tempted to keep my head blank for this reason alone.

4. People Think I’m Brave

Thank you, but I’m not. I’m simply not brave, at all.

Brave is going to work knowing you could become infected and die, but you are a key worker and people rely on you.

Brave is accepting that you cannot attend your child’s funeral because you have to protect your other children.

So thank you, everyone, for your kind thoughts, but brave is not having a severe haircut in your kitchen, no matter how unattractive it looks.

5. Blogging

This was the biggest surprise of all. As you know, I hadn’t blogged in over a year, but I naturally thought of my blog to publicise the fundraising for Masks For NHS Heroes. Then I had to write a post with the video of the shave. But then, however, during that shower – I do my best work in showers – I thought of this post about the unexpected aftermath of having a disrobed skull. Then I left it in the draft folder for six months because I was dealing with other health issues, but here I am, three weeks and three posts back into blogging, and in danger of making it a habit.

In jammies, dressing gown, and very warm hat.

6. A Texture Fetish

Not naughty in any way, just the constant need to rub a hand over my naked head – for comfort, I guess. The first day, I rubbed because it felt so strange. The next day, because it had already grown a tiny bit, enough to feel like I was rubbing velvet. Then there was the contrast of cold, smooth hands on a lumpy scalp; the velcro action when I pulled off a woolly hat after my walk (it feels like there’s some truth to the notion that heat escapes through the top of the head, because for a while there I had to don a hat or scarf outdoors and in).

7. Addition

I realised when I numbered the headings that I actually have only six surprising side effects, not seven.

Samson lost his strength; I lost the ability to math.

13 Responses to “7 Surprising Side Effects of Shaving My Head”

  1. Al October 27, 2020 at 15:05 #

    Loved that comb-over. Trump would be proud.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. catterel October 27, 2020 at 20:32 #

    Just wondering – is it growing back curly? I know someone whose hair has gone very curly during menopause …

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Laughing Housewife October 29, 2020 at 15:55 #

      Lots of curls at the ends, which started in menopause like your friend’s.

      Sadly, it’s only curly enough to be annoying, not cute and perky.

      I tried to comment on your blog but my comment disappeared.

      Like

  3. restlessjo October 27, 2020 at 23:41 #

    Well done, lass! We’re proud of you 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. slpmartin October 28, 2020 at 03:54 #

    Had you held a guitar in the second photo…you could have auditioned for a punk band…but you have a too noble heart for such foolishness.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Laughing Housewife October 29, 2020 at 15:58 #

      Haha! Too craven a heart more like – I’m a conservative dresser by nature 🙂

      I’ve tried to comment on your blog but my comments are disappearing all over the place.

      Like

I welcome your comments but be warned: I'm menopausal and as likely to snarl as smile. Wine or Maltesers are an acceptable bribe; or a compliment about my youthful looks and cheery disposition will do in a pinch.

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