For nearly 3 years now – *panics that 3 years have somehow passed* – I have decided not to shave my head again, or have a drastically shorter hair cut, because I felt that I owed my fundraising supporters something. For some, ridiculous reason, I thought that people would judge me for doing it again because it would take away from the impact that that first time had. I guess that because it was such a big deal at the time, and everyone was so supportive, telling me how brave I was for making such a big commitment… Doing it again felt that it would be like a big ‘fuck you’ to those who donated so thoughtfully to my fundraiser.
I loved having short hair. I loved how it looked. I felt so free and liberated. But I felt that I had to grow it out, because being bald was a special event that seemed to be protected by social opinion. So I let it grow. And for ages, it’s been fine. I stuck it out through the awkward stages, and continuously cut and dyed it to find something that I was comfortable with. But I was impulsive and impatient, and nothing seemed right.
A few days ago, I decided that I really wanted to shave it off again. Although I had just dyed it, I was already impatient. I liked the colour but it wasn’t perfect, and I was already thinking about what to do next. As soon as I thought about it, the impulse started growing. Resolving to sleep on it, I already knew I would do it. Two days later, my hair was swept into a pile, and thrown away.
I felt – feel – liberated once more. And I no longer cared whether the donors from three years ago would feel put out.
The £3000 that I raised went towards a cause I strongly believe in. At the time, it was a huge deal, and the amount raised was overwhelming. The amount I cried during and after the process was genuine – at the time, it was a huge deal, and I am still, to this day, thankful for all of the donations. But I have decided that just because something was once such a big deal, it doesn’t have to be that way forever. Today, having a buzz cut is just my hairstyle preference. It helps me find comfort in my gender identity, and simply, I like the look. I will no longer feel guilty for enjoying it.