A few months ago, my husband and I signed up for Hair For Hope 2013, a shaving event that aims to raise awareness for children’s cancer. And by shave, I mean shave all the hair on your head.
I have been wanting to do this for a few years now, and finally have the chance this year. The weeks leading up to the event, I almost backed out because of various reasons. My parents weren’t supportive of the idea, even though our family has fought cancer for the past few years. My dad thought I was nuts and said I just need to give money if I really wanted to do something.
The whole shaving took less than 10 minutes for me and as the hairdresser shaved me, I felt my head getting cooler and cooler. To a certain extent, the shave felt liberating.
Really appreciate this group of friends and my cousin who went to Vivocity to support us. They helped us with looking after Phoebie while we were getting shaved, as well as taking videos and tons of photos.
As we queued for our shave, I was actually fighting back tears. Tears not because I was worried or scared about losing my hair but because I felt very touched by the number of people getting shaved. Men, women, children and elderly, thousands were shaving their heads to show support for cancer patients.
I don’t know how old the lady with a head full of white hair is, but I sincerely felt touched by her part in this event. And she wasn’t the only elderly I saw. Some elderly, despite needing walking sticks, made their way on stage n sat down to be shaved. My friends say they salute me for my courage, but the people I really want to salute are these elderly.
A lot of people queued up for the walk-in shave and despite waiting for more than an hour to be shaved, they participated. Hair for Hope 2013 at Vivocity continues tomorrow and I believe thousands more will step forward to make a bald statement.
I wanted to take the step to shave because I wanted to show my support, not only for children with cancer, but also for everyone I know who have fought or are fighting cancer. I know I can simply donate my money to help and I am not obligated to shave. But especially after I have shaved, I feel for patients when people simply stare at their bald heads. For cancer patients, it is not a choice to be bald. Chemotherapy causes most of them to lose a lot of hair. To deal with treatment pains is already not easy. To handle unnecessary stress from strangers who simply stare is a whole different thing altogether.
Not many people know this, but another reason I wanted to shave is because Ben and I lost a baby in March this year. We only had the baby for 9 weeks, but losing the baby was one of the most painful journeys I ever had to go through. I cannot imagine the pain of parents who have lost their children to cancer, or any disease for that matter. Losing your flesh and blood is like having someone rip a part of you and never to get it back. Baby Billie, this is for you too.
To all cancer patients, whether child or adult, I salute you with my bald head. Here’s to a good fight and a fight all the way.
Hair for Hope, I will be back. Maybe not so soon, but I will be back.