Alopecian Empress

Alopecia is teaching me a lot about myself.

It’s very hard to look into the mirror and see that your hair is different.  The bald spot is growing back slowly and also getting bigger at the same time.  Thankfully I can still hide it but it is getting harder to do that also.

Alopecia is teaching me that beauty doesn’t come from your hair.  It comes from inside.

Imagine if you woke up one day and you had a bald spot or clumps of hair started to come out.

How would that make you feel?

I know I felt shock at first.  I immediately started to look for answers on how to stop it from happening or a cure.  I quickly learned that there wasn’t one.  No one knows why alopecia happens.  There is also no one treatment that helps.  It is an autoimmune disease.  It has many causes.  The causes include stress, vitamin deficiency, hormones, other autoimmune disease, or diet.  Those are just some of the causes.

For some people, just changing their diet brings their hair back.  Some people just have to take vitamins.  Some people get steroid injections.  Even when the hair grows back, it can fall out again in the future.

Alopecia has taught me acceptance.

I accept what is happening in the current moment.  Yes my hair is growing back slowly and my spot has gotten bigger.

My beauty, identity, and confidence comes from inside.  My soul is where my beauty, identity, and confidence lie.

My beauty is not based solely on my looks.

Alopecia has also given me a new direction in life.

I’ll be speaking at a alopecia beauty event next month.  I wouldn’t be doing that if I didn’t have alopecia.  I wouldn’t be the Alopecian Empress without alopecia.  I have so many opportunities now.

I’m just surprising myself.  I never would have thought that losing my hair could lead to me living my best life.  The Alopecian Empress has arrived.

Alopecia has made me stronger.

 

 

Falling Off

Three months ago, I had noticed that I had gained 15 pounds.  I was determined to lose it and not diet.

I knew the reason that I gained it.  I wasn’t moving my body as much as usual and I wasn’t eating like I normally ate.  When I go to my parent’s house, I eat what they eat.  I usually don’t eat a lot of potatoes, rice, or that many carbs.  Adding those to my diet for 3 months and not exercising a lot added to my weight gain.  It wasn’t anybody’s fault but my own.  I also wasn’t drinking enough water each day.

I also didn’t realize how much I walk when I go to work at the hospital.  On this assignment, I paid attention to how much I walk at work.  I average between 8,000 to 15,000 steps per day when I work a 12 hour shift.  That equals between 5 to 6 miles a day at work.  The last time I worked I got 14,300 steps.  When I took 3 months off, I only hiked twice a week.  My body was used to getting in way more steps than those 2 days of hiking provided.  The mountain I hiked was only 4 miles.  I should have been going up and down the mountain at least 2 times to even get all the steps that I needed to maintain my weight.  I thought at the time that hiking twice a week was going to be enough.

Also I wasn’t about to start denying myself any food that I wanted.  I still have a sweet tooth.  If I crave a piece of cake then I indulge.  If I want a chocolate chip muffin then I indulge.

When I got to my assignment, I just started to eat the way I normally do.  It was way too hot in Florida during the summer to workout outside.  On my days off, I don’t like to wake up early. The only time that it was cool outside was in the early mornings.  Thankfully my landlord had a treadmill.

Despite me not hiking, I still was able to lose 10 pounds.  I haven’t stepped on a scale in 3 months, but I can tell by the way my clothes fit and the way my body looks.  It really just felt like it fell off without me trying anything.  Taking the stairs was something that I started doing at work for the last year.  Eating healthy about ninety percent of the time is something that I’ve been doing for the past 3 years.  I’ve been a nurse for about 15 years now.  I just now realized how many steps I get and that helps me to maintain my weight.  Going 3 months without a job affected my weight.

Thankfully, I’m back on track.  I’m drinking enough water and exercising.

I remember someone in the past telling me that when you gain weight don’t buy any new clothes in a bigger size if you want to lose weight.  I thought about that because my jeans were getting really tight.  They were starting to get really uncomfortable to wear and my muffin top was showing.  I hadn’t had a muffin top in about 3 years.  I was considering buying some new jeans in a bigger size.  Those same jeans are now comfortable to wear and not tight anymore.

It is possible to lose weight and not feel like you are depriving yourself of anything.

I can indulge when I want to and not worry about falling off the deep end.  I also don’t worry about reigniting my eating disorder anymore.  I’ve found a lifestyle that I can maintain. Now I know that I can fall off the wagon and then get right back on and get back on track with my lifestyle.

What is one thing that you can do today to help you to maintain a healthy lifestyle for yourself?

As soon as I got home this week, I weighed myself.  I’ve lost 11 pounds.  The clothes that didn’t fit 3 months ago now fit.  I don’t have to buy a new wardrobe.

I now have a plan for when I’m off of work.  I will hike 3 times a week.  I also have my subscription to daily burn that I can use if it’s too hot to go outside.  I will eat dinner with my parents and not eat a lot of carbs. I will drink 2.5 Liters of water every day.  Doing those small steps will help me to maintain my weight without gaining any weight.