I started to lose my hair in my late thirties, but I’d always had very thick hair. I began to lose it gradually so I was aware of it enough to try different things to stop it. I would put hairpieces on; I tried hair transplants, etc. I was so self-conscious that I didn’t look in a mirror for about ten years. I learned how to put lipstick on without a mirror. I would use a pocket mirror to put eye make-up on. All so I didn’t ever have to look at my face, because I couldn’t stand to see what I looked like. My hair loss caused me to look about ten or fifteen years older. I had a midlife career change at age 46. I went from being an accountant to a court stenographer. Then I worked on a trial that ended up being on TV. Occasionally I would be in the shot. My family would call me up and tell me they saw me on TV! When I saw the footage I could really see the bald spots. I began to cry and didn’t know what to do.
My embarrassment got so bad, that before I would attend a family wedding or party I would start vomiting and make myself run a fever. I would then call and say I couldn’t make it because I was sick. If you look at family pictures I’m probably not in many because I either took them or managed to be in the bathroom or somewhere else. So my very first day of work after my hair treatment was on a Monday. I got my new hair on the Saturday before and on that next Monday I was assigned to a high profile murder trial that was going to be televised on Court TV. I was petrified. So I walk into work and everyone is now seeing the new me because I went redhead. I was so nervous, but I kept going to the ladies room and looking in the mirror thinking I look pretty good. I haven’t looked this good in years. Then the people from Court TV are telling me I look great and my coloring is perfect for television.
My whole family and me were taping and watching the trial, so when I got home that night my phone was ringing off the hook. Everybody was telling me how fabulous I looked! I played the tape and I couldn’t stop watching myself, I mean I looked twenty years younger. I thought this is the real me, the color fit my personality because I laugh a lot. I just felt young. It changed my whole attitude and it changed how I presented myself. All of the sudden I was going to the parties and weddings. The whole experience has been so uplifting. When someone is complimenting me on my hair it is the best feeling in the world. There isn’t enough money that could pay for this feeling. -Carol