Why did I shave my head? To answer that thoroughly, I would have to tell you a story that spans twenty-three years full of influential experiences that pushed me to make that decision. But I believe that’s where the truth lies in all of this. It’s never the action that holds value. It’s the thoughts, moments, and feelings behind it that take you past the edge and to a place where that decision becomes the only truth. For me, all of this boiled up to an overwhelming fear of stagnation.
A lack of growth, in my opinion, is one of the only mistakes you can make in life. So when I noticed the absence of progress becoming a habit, I freaked out. I thought, I need to do something to initiate change—I need to put myself into a new headspace where I am forced to explore and experience discomfort.
Although I had been wanting to remove my silky smooth hair for about a year, these thoughts of intense fear came to me in one night. The next day I drove myself to Target, walked to the men’s haircare section and picked myself out some clippers. After the purchase, I texted my friend and said, “I’m going to shave my head.” She responded, “Can I do it?”
At 3:30pm she helped me put my hair into a ponytail, and took scissors to it. After the first cut, tears fell from my eyes as I held the majority of my hair in my hands. It was such a surreal feeling to see this long, shiny extension of myself in my hands instead of attached to my head. The tears quickly stopped and we continued to shave the remaining pieces off, but the tears made me realize something. They weren’t ones of sadness or fear. They were filled with shock and disbelief that so many emotions could be unknowingly connected to a protein produced by my body. It’s obvious to me now that it wasn’t as simple as that, but instead I had removed what I had been told my whole life was a symbol of my womanhood.
When I think about it now, I could have called this action an experiment. A sort of test, to see if I could still claim my femininity and confidence that the world would tell me no longer existed without my hair. And I am thrilled and proud to report that the results are a resounding F*CK YEAH! I have never felt such a confidence and comfort in myself before. As soon as all the hair was gone I took a breath and felt peace. It was as if I was supposed to have had this hair, and by extension this freedom, my whole life.
There have been days I have longed for the comfort my old hair gave me. Days where I felt like shit and didn’t want to take on the role of a confident and fearless woman. It can be easy and go on unrecognized to hide behind the simple and “normal” things. But normal has not been my intention for a long time. The term ordinary scares the sh*t out of me. It should never be used to describe a human. Ideally, we should all represent our true, unique selves to the point that the word ordinary would be an impossible label to put on anyone.
So that’s my plan. To exemplify nothing but me. To radiate confidence and understanding. To grow.
Author: Jordan Bickham
Author Bio: Jordan is a quirky-cool woman who enjoys embracing the weird in life. She loves to learn about anything and everything. She studies art history at Ohio State University and runs Forget Me Not Vegan Bakery (@forgetmenotveganbakery) from her home with her best friend.
Link to social media or website: http://www.instagram.com/itsjustjordn_