2016 #Alopecia Update

I’m starting this post with an apology – sorry for not posting to all those people asking for an update. The reason I started this blog was to give people regular information and to keep track real time of what was happening with my alopecia. I didn’t keep my end of the bargain but here’s an update  – with a possible explanation.

The reason I haven’t blogged as much as I promised

Aside from being lazy, I haven’t updated as much because – my hair’s been growing back really well during 2015 and I didn’t want to go back to my obsessive state by talking – or even thinking about it.

This may sound like an excuse (and it is) but every time I thought “shit I need to write a blog post” – another wee voice in the back of my (now hairy) head said – “nah – just enjoy the full head of hair you have – stop fretting”.

As I said at the start of this post – sorry for that. Here’s the back of my head taken today (January 4th) – pretty much covered – apart from the usual thinning a 38 year old can expect.

DSC_0093

Back of my head January 2016

The hair on my head has almost all returned (you can see where it is thinner) – apart from one spot above my right ear, which is covered in grey/white hair :

grey bit

The shot above showing the grey patch above my right ear is light years away from the photo below – taken almost 3 years ago in February 2013.

Alopecia hair February 2013

Feb 2013

Facial Hair

This has remained pretty static and hasn’t fully returned – here’s a face shot from today -as you can see most of my eyebrows and eyelashes are back but my moustache hasn’t fully returned (no Movember for me) and you can see that my cheeks and chin STILL have the white hairs – which haven’t as yet gone ‘back to black’.

DSC_0090

Again – though there isn’t full regrowth – it is hugely improved from July 2013 (below) when I had to razor my head, face and eyebrows everyday.

Alopecia hair July 2013

July 2013

What have I been doing differently?

Nothing – as I’ve said a few times – and to people who comment on various posts or ask me questions – I haven’t done anything drastic or different. I have stopped:

  • obsessing
  • staring at the patches
  • worrying

I’m unsure if this is the reason for regrowth or just the end of this cycle of hair loss – but learning to shift focus from worry and obsession of alopecia has worked for me physically and emotionally.

Unfortunately the flip side of this approach means I have neglected the duties of this blog. 

I will try my best to update much more frequently and please let me know if you have any questions, comments or anything you want me to blog about.

Cheers and Happy 2016!

august 2015

 

Reece

 

 

14 comments

  1. I can wholly understand why loosing your hair can be do upsetting and impact on your confidence/self esteem but where you are concerned Reece, and I’m sure others in the same position, you are so well loved that to us it made no difference. I have to say that when I first saw you without your hair I was distraught not knowing at that point if you had cancer or another life threatening illness so to be honest it was a massive relief to know that it was alopecia. As I said I’m not minimising your feelings and I’m delighted that you have your hair back but either way you are loved.

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  2. Hi Reese,

    I am so happy for you that your hair has returned and I think this blog is wonderful. One question though. How exactly did you stop obsessing, worrying, and staring in the mirror? I can’t seem to get past that stage and it is driving me crazy. Please help.

    Francesco

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    1. Hi Francesco,

      Stopping worrying was a long process but I started by observing my reactions to my ‘stress outs’ – they were physical and emotional and were usually a result of staring in a mirror or sitting thinking about hair and bald patches.

      I tried to make a point of NOT looking in the mirror as much at first – as much as I wanted to – I tried not to as I knew that it would inevitably lead to awful feelings, more stress and anxiety. A quick check to make sure I had nothing stuck on my face or spinach in-between my teeth was OK. But I pretty much immediately stopped looking in mirrors as much I knew it was bad for me at that point. Staring at my reflection was a trigger to obsess and get upset.

      Once I got to the acceptance stage and truly started to feel like it didn’t matter what was going on with my AA – I started looking in mirrors again and the feelings were no longer there anymore.

      Lots of other things helped – i explained some in a blog post here. https://myalopeciajourney.wordpress.com/2014/05/01/the-treatments-and-coping-mechanisms-i-tried-and-how-they-worked-for-me/

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  3. Hi Reece, looking good! I’m currently at the stage you were at in 2013 and your blog gives me some kind of hope. It’s been getting me down a bit and then I feel guilty about feeling down as on the great scheme of things it’s not a huge deal. Anyway as you say what’s the point in stressing about it, fingers crossed in a year or two I’ll have a head of hair as good as yours. Best wishes- Mick

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    1. Hey Mick

      My hair is showing patches again but I did have a good run at the old glossy locks – a full year – am putting up a new blog post soon.

      Exactly as you type – there is no point worrying about it – all that does is make you and everyone around you sad – or angry.

      Keep your chin up!
      Reece

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  4. Hi Reece. Great work on your blog. As a sufferer too, it’s been a reassuring resource for me as I battle my way through the roller coaster ride of emotions that it creates. I’m currently in the midst of the worst episode yet and am contemplating shaving for the first time. Would you mind sending me your email address so I can ask you a couple of questions? Many thanks for all your work! Rob

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