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10:20 a.m. - 2010-03-26
Chrome Domed

Last night while telling Mick about my chat with the ex I made mention of Mike's ever expanding bald spot. Mick sighed and said he never thought he'd be curious about the ex's feelings about anything, but now was wondering if Mike was as bothered by his hair falling out as Mick has been. About his own hair, not the ex's, of course. Mick said this is why he'd adopted the Mr Clean look. Voluntarily taking all his hair off was easier to deal with than watching its slow but exorable disappearance off the top of his pate. Mick hates his bald spot. He hates how what is left of his hair is grey and white. He hates the way his sideburns have gone all wiry and weird and grow sticking straight out sideways. Shaving his head to the scalp gives him a measure of control over what he feels is a terrible betrayal by his follicles.

I tried to relate. I thought about the tremendous changes foisted on my body during pregnancy and by nursing. How parts of me that had been pink had permanently changed colors. How even now 26 years later my belly looks like it had been clawed by tigers, the stretch-marks were that severe. The post-lactation drooping breasts. The mask of pregnancy that never did fade entirely. The puckered C-section scar and the bulgy pooch above it that no amount of weight-loss and ab crunches can make go away.

But then I thought about how those were the marks left by producing two brand new human beings. I got some results from those changes to my body, what good was served by Mick's hair falling out? What could he point to and say, "Yeah, I look like shit now, but look what came out of the deal?" That he made it to his 50th birthday? I think he'd have been just as aware of his half-century with hair. That male pattern baldness is prompted by high levels of testosterone? "Dude! My hair fell out because I have way more testosterone than you!" Small solace when most women's eyes go right past the balding guys to feast upon Mr Pretty Locks over there at the end of the bar. That guy might have bit less of a certain hormone, but at least he still needs hair gel and a blow dryer. And a little black book, if he's single. Not so the bald guys.

Losing my hair has never been anything I ever had to worry about. Yes, I know post-menopause that women's hair does thin out a bit. In my case I could safely shed at least half of this dense growth on my head before it made any noticeable difference. I gots lots of hair. And should the awful happen and I lose my hair from chemo, I am reasonably certain it'll grow back when I'm done. Mick's hair ain't never coming back. It went without his permission and for no purpose that can be identified as worth the trade-off.

That's gotta suck.


Sometimes it's really good to be a girl. ~LA

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