Emotional Meltdown, Party of One

8.30.2015
last week, i had a major emotional meltdown.  over my hair.  writing it out now seems totally ridiculous, but at the time, it really is what happened.  and it's not a first.

let me back up, in case you missed it in two prior posts - my hair has been falling out like crazy.  not normal shedding.  handfuls and handfuls of hair.  if i hadn't started with the horse's mane i did and instead had relatively normal or even fine hair, i would be bald by now.  i don't have any patches, it's just overall, from everywhere on my head, hair loss.  it started in march and i cannot figure out why.  i've been to 2 doctors besides my dad, and a dermatologist.  everything checks out normal; everything from iron levels to thyroid to my ana markers (whatever that means but apparently it's testing for lupus.)  the only abnormal things are a minorly lower level of vitamin b12 and a significantly low level of vitamin d.  according to my internet research, lack of vitamin d can cause hair loss, though my latest doctor is not convinced this is the cause of my problem.  regardless, we're fixing those two things but it will take at least 6 weeks.  it's been 2 and the lack of visible progress drives me bonkers.

which leads to the other major issue - my stress and panic over the situation.  stress leads to hair loss.  but i'm stressing about hair loss, which leads to more loss, and then more stress and... vicious, never ending cycle.  everyone's advice was 'just relax, it's no big deal, it's just hair, stress makes it worse' and that's all well and good and intellectually i agree with them, but emotionally that's just not how anxiety works.  there is not an off switch.  so my current doctor started me on zoloft to control the anxiety and my ocd.  like counting exactly how many (hundreds at a time) hairs fell out.  apparently that's not normal.  

so last week, i went to lunch with my friend who, as politely as possible after i grilled her about it, told me yes, you can notice a difference in the volume of my hair.  (don't worry, of course she was super kind in telling me 'you can hardly tell! you still have amazing hair!'  i, naturally, stopped listening as soon as she started being positive, because i'm an asshole and that's what i do.)  before that moment, it was only my parents, john, and my dermatologist agreeing with me that my hair was at about half it's usual thickness, so the fact that other people could actually start to notice made me panic.

i felt the tears stinging in my eyes, i felt the tightness in my chest and the sudden loss of oxygen.  i panicked that my anxiety medication wasn't working and i did mental math to figure out how many xanaxes i could take.

and then i bought $120 worth of volumizing and thickening hair care products at ulta.  emotional shopping is real, people.  i also called my doctor and had her increase my zoloft dosage because 50 mg is trix cereal.  and because emotional meltdowns over my hair leave me with the deep seeded urge to exert total control over absolutely everything else around me.

i'm ridiculously attached to my hair.  unexplainably.  sure it's pretty but i think it's just because it's always been there.  i've had long, thick hair since i was born, pretty much.  my mom rarely got it cut. and i liked it that way.  and now (well, before the massive shedding) it's my favorite feature.  i've got good boobs too, but i. love. my. hair.  so much so that i apparently panic over it to the point of needing medication.  when you think about all the other actual, real issues people deal with, it's all so insane, but i cannot stop obsessing about it.  emotions took over my logical side and i cried.  over hair.

i did do non-drug, non-shopping related things to calm myself down.  including visiting the field museum with john.  and drinking tea and watching netflix from my bed while i cuddled hawkeye and snowy, the stuffed bear i've had my entire life.  and decluttering my mom's house because nothing makes me feel better than discarding old crap and organizing a clean space.  plus my parents baby me and tell me i need to take vacations.  oh and i spent a ton of time on a post that goes up tomorrow that i love.  so i hope you love it to.

anyway, now here i sit, with a slightly better and more realistic view of the situation.  slowly trying to distance myself from my extreme attachment to my hair.  que sera sera.  or some shit.

p.s. in case you're wondering - best $120 i've ever spent.  everything i bought works.  so ask me if you ever want full, thick, fluffy hair, i've got the products for you.  as well as the info on about 40 hair related supplements.

p.p.s. and yes, i realize that this is a first world problem.  but let's be honest - i'm a 30 year old privileged white women who lives in chicago with a j.d. and works in a law firm.  who has no debt and no major health issues outside an unexplained shedding of hair.  to assume i've ever had anything other than first world problems would be wildly inaccurate. 

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