Shaving My Head: About a Difficult Battle With An Unknown Hair Condition

 

Hello everyone; I must say I’m excited to be posting again.

Last Friday (May 25, 2018) was one of the more eventful days as of recently. Emotionally, I had (and still have) been feeling better than ever than in the past few weeks, even months. My emotional state on the positive side, I’ve been having much more motivation to do things and a lot more ideas, as well. Things are looking up, and I’m grateful. But there’s one issue that has been sort of an elephant in the room when talking about recent months. And that issue is: hair loss.

At 19 years old, that’s most certainly an unusual thing for me to be dealing with. But still, that’s the hand I’ve been dealt. The causes have been going on for probably about a year now, but it’s actually accelerated in the past 3 months or so. In fact, in early April, there was a point where I had lost more hair in 2 weeks than in the previous 2 or 3 months. Eventually, it got to the point where my hair was getting weird and patchy, and of course, a lot shorter than I would have liked. It soon got to the point where I was forced to make a decision: start all over again and take good care of my hair and the situations causing the hair loss, or force myself to deal with my uneven hair. I was hesitant at first, for I hadn’t had a haircut in over 2 years prior, but eventually I decided that the aesthetic benefits would be much more better if I chose the latter of those options. And that I did.

Now as I mentioned in the video, there are two reasons that this whole thing started. The first and the primary reason is a disorder known as trichotillomania. Now this can be difficult to talk about sometimes, but I’m gonna do this anyways. I feel like I should educate the public a little, and be more transparent with what’s going on. Trichotillomania is a condition that causes people to have an impulsive urge to pull out their own hair. It’s similar to OCD, given that the urges are sort of a tick, or an “addiction”, for a real lack of a better phrase. It’s not something you consciously do. It’s not like I think “Okay, haircut time!” and start pulling out my hair. It’s different than that. It’s unconscious. It’s comparable to how you can have a bowl of popcorn next to you while watching TV and the whole thing will be done before you know it. You don’t particularly desire the popcorn, but you just keep on eating it, just because. That’s basically the same feeling, really, but instead of popcorn it’s tugging on hairs or small clumps of hair until they come out. Shaving all hair is the best option for many trichotillomaniacs, because 1) you run out of stuff you can pull, and 2) it undoes much of the damage done by the condition.

That’s the main reason, but not the only one. Additionally, I’m on a medication known as Lithium Carbonate. It’s commonly and most often used to treat Bipolar Disorder, which I have regrettably been diagnosed with. Things were going well for the first few months I was taking it, things were pretty good. But then, after doing some more research on the effects of medications, and I read that lithium caused hair loss for a lot of people. I didn’t think about it a lot at first, but then I started being more observant. Whenever I’d wash or rub my hair, tons of it would just fall out without much effort at all. That scared me a lot, and I eventually consulted with my psychiatrist. She confirmed that it was a side effect, and that if the hair loss persisted–which it did–that she’d half the dosage and proceed from there. So although I’m taking a lot less of the medication, I still feel like that was a huge contribution to my decision to shave my head.

But things don’t just stop now that I’m almost bald. There’s a series of other things I will try to do in order to make sure my hair grows back better, stronger and longer, and that I don’t fall back and undo all of my progress. Here are what they are:

-Using a fidget toy, more specifically a fidget orb, in order to keep my hands busy and away from my head

-Using a multivitamin or a supplement such as biotin, as well as using a special shampoo, such as Jamaican Black Castor Oil, which I’ve heard highly of

-Not washing my hair every single day. Doing so would dry out the scalp, damaging hair and making it break easily. Only doing so every few days will preserve natural oils produced by the scalp, moisturizing and keeping things soft

-When it gets long, combing my hair regularly, and possibly keeping it braided. Not doing so would cause tangles that makes the hair less healthy and easier to pick.

After all this, I’m still very optimistic for the future. Besides this, I actually feel pretty good. I think the biggest issue with this will be dealing with self confidence/dysphoria issues. That’s just another in a long line of things I need to work on, though. Needless to say, I’m gonna keep on trying, and a year from now I’m most definitely going to make an update. Look out!

Likewise.blog now back up

Hello all. Some of you probably already know this, but from Dec. 2, 2017 to Dec. 13, 2017 (that’s today), Likewise.blog was down and was unable to be accessed. I’m back up now, though, and again you’re able to access all of my delicious writing. If net neutrality is struck down then I’ll surely lose a lot of viewers, but for now, look out for more of my work to come soon! I actually have a few things planned, that I should be talking about more later.

What my life has been recently

Hello all! Whatever has brought you to this blog to continue reading my posts, whether it be my life, my traveling, or my writing, I greatly appreciate you being here.

As of right now, posting on here has been difficult. It’s not that I don’t want to post, it’s that I don’t have much time to do it. College admissions, schoolwork, my writing, and taking care of my mental health have been my top priorities and have thus been taking up the most of my time. Honesty is beautiful when it comes to my fans and my viewers, and honestly, life has been very stressful these past several weeks. Hence, I’ve found myself with the inability to post nearly as much as I want to.

That being said, I expect things to pick up in a few weeks, at least. Finishing high school on the 26th of this May, I’ll have a lot more time and energy to focus on my blogging and my writing career—my passion in life and the main thing I want to do with myself.

To make things clear, I’m not going on a hiatus or anything; I just think I owe you guys an explanation, and that’s what this is. I’ve made a promise to always be as open and honest as possible with my viewers, and even though I’m in the beginning stages, this is no exception. I appreciate all of the support you have given me thus far, and will continue to give me in the future!

Some technical difficulties 

Hello all, due to some issues with my phone storage, the Day 2 Quebec trip post and part of the Day 1 post will be delayed. Photo galleries will also be uploaded after the trip on separate posts, and then I will update the posts with the links. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Edit (Apr. 15, 2017 @12:26 a.m.)

I’ve thought about how I’ve been formatting these posts. Given the circumstances, I feel like it’s a lot better if I publish the posts when I arrive back in the states. A reliable Internet connection and good computer access are a necessity for making quality posts, and those are two things that I don’t have right now. Don’t worry though! I’m having a great time and I can’t wait to tell you all about it when I get back.

My Quebec Trip – Prelude

Hello all! There is a big surprise that I’ve been waiting to unveil, and I think now is the perfect time to do so. For a few days before and during spring break, I, my brother, and several other students from school will be taking a class trip to Quebec, Canada!

The group of us will be visiting many different sites and attractions all over the province. These include a tour of Quebec city, the Musée du Fort, Montmorency Falls, and a visit to the Montréal Science Centre. We will be accompanied by tour guides, chaperones, and Mr. Petit, the wonderful and extremely generous French teacher who will be running the trip! The full itinerary can be found at the bottom of this article.

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A meeting discussing the details of the trip. (Feb. 21, 2017 10:45 AM)

We will be leaving first thing in the morning on April 12, 2017—that’s Wednesday—and arriving back in the states 5 days later. I will make a post every evening detailing the events and experiences of the day. This will include pictures, vlogs, and firsthand accounts from other people attending the trip with me. I also plan to release a poem or short story here and there, just so my blog won’t be entirely focused on the trip.

I’m very excited for this trip! This will be the 4th time I’ve travelled outside of the United States, and the 2nd time I’ve been to Canada. The first time was when I was 7 years old, though, so this should be a great new experience for me, anyways. Oh and by the way, we won’t be taking a flight there; a long bus ride to and from the country awaits us. All of this is sure to bring a fresh new adventure that you all are sure to enjoy!

 

Click here to view the full itinerary

My First Ever Book Signing! 3/11/2017

Hello all. As some of you already know, yesterday was a very eventful day; I did my first ever book signing ever!

The signing was for my teen/YA novel, The Month Of June. It took place at a local bookstore known as 2nd & Charles, often frequented by interesting and enthusiastic readers. I was set up at the front of the store, to the front right as soon as you walk in the door. I must admit that the location wasn’t ideal, but I still went with it!

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I saw several interesting people there, and sold several books. Nobody asked to take a picture to be on this blog, but I did meet a nice old man who told me a very interesting story about himself. I plan to write a short story based on it.

All in all, it was was a pretty good first experience. I really hope to do things like that again. And if you live in or around the area, there are still a few copies left at the store. Head over and buy one if you can!

Delaware Book Signing – March 11, 2017 12pm-4pm

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Hello everyone! I am very excited, for this Saturday there is an event coming up that I’ve been waiting for for a long time – my first ever book signing!

This is yet another major milestone that I’m very proud to have achieved. If you live in or around the northern Delaware area, or will be around here this weekend, I’d greatly appreciate it if you would come and help me make this event a success!

All of the necessary information is included on the flyer above, which will also be passed around in person, for those of you that know me personally. 2nd & Charles is a popular bookstore in the area, and will be sure to bring a lot of wonderful people. And when I say it’s a book signing, that’s just a general term. Below is a list of different things that I plan to be doing while there:

  • Signing copies of my book, The Month Of June (of course)
  • Signing shirts, photos, or anything else you might want to have signed
  • Selling copies of The Month Of June, as well as having an order form on hand, in case we run out
  • Taking pictures with passersby, and adding a small bio for a “Humans Of New York”-esque post that will be made right here.
  • Taking requests for poems, short stories, and the like

These are just some of the things! I’m still going over the possibilities, but there’s sure to be a lot there to enjoy. It’s fine if you can’t make it, too; I’ll be making a post detailing the whole thing. 

I hope to see you there!

     

     

    A Major Milestone Has Been Reached

    Hello all, just a short post to tell you about an exciting big step in my writing career. Last afternoon (2/27/17), there was a pleasant surprise as my brother Travis informed me that a package arrived for me. I opened it and discovered that it turned out to be my first ever shipment of my book, The Month Of June!

    It’s a surprise since I expected it to arrive on March 7th, as the website projected. But now that they’re here I can get to selling them sooner, and be able to get more money to then put into buying more books.

    This really is a milestone for me. This started out as just a story I worked on in my notebook on my free time. And to finally see it materialized in front of me like this is amazing, and shows just how far I’ve come.

    You can grab your own copy of The Month of June, too. All of the information about it is right here, with links to different purchasing options at the bottom. 

    The Month Of June–Now available online and in stores!

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    Hello all! I have some very exciting news to share with you. My book, The Month Of June, has been republished and is now fully available on Amazon and Kindle!

    The book is a 112-page novella, best categorized as a teen/young adult contemporary romance. I wrote this back in 2013/2014 when I was going through a very difficult time in life. Hence, this contains a lot of sad or upsetting content that reflects how I felt during the writing process.

    The Month Of June is the story of a teenage boy named Daniel. He’s lived in the same area his entire life. Through the several ups and the very many downs, everything went on in his town; his best friend Marcus, his favourite frozen yogurt store, and especially,his bedroom. That all comes to an end when he moves to a new town in a new state. It devastates him, and he shuts himself away emotionally to block out the pain. Then, after the move, he gets to know his new neighbor, a bright young girl named June. He starts off as he normally does; shutting her out and ignoring her attempts to be friends. But it turns out way differently than he expected, and the move turns out to be an experience that he will never forget.

    This book was basically stagnant for a long time; I didn’t do much work on it since I had lost confidence. But recently, a few friends of mine read the book and strongly encouraged me to continue doing work on it. So I took the manuscript, reformatted it, and republished it to make it nicer, better, and overall a lot more accessible. I think it’s a very good book, and a good story that a lot of people will want to read! I hope all of you enjoy my work, and I greatly welcome any feedback or reviews any of you have.


    Buy it on Amazon – For the average reader. Paperback, 6″x9″

    Buy it on Kindle – For all you eBook lovers out there. Buy the physical copy and get the digital copy for only 99 cents!

    Buy it on Createspace – This is a lesser-known purchasing option. But if you’d like to support me, this is the same cost as it is on Amazon, but I make a little more money for each copy sold.

    Buy it on Ebay – Price is much higher, but it’s still an option!

    Buy it at Barnes & Noble – The only way to buy it at a physical store right now! Order it online, or ask for it and have a copy shipped to your local store.

    2017 Update

    Well everyone, believe it or not, we’re already 1 week into 2017. For many, 2016 was a heck of a year, with many celebrity deaths, a leap day, a summer Olympics, and a very heated and unpredictable presidential election. Now that that’s over, we can all look ahead to the new year and hope that it’s better than the last.

    First of all, there’s my posting. It really is a bad habit of mine to have several posts planned and partially typed but never getting around to posting them. That happened to me just last week, actually. I had a post planned filled with thoughts and predictions for 2017, what I think about New Year’s traditions, et cetera. But I waited much too long to post it; now it’s the 8th of January and the line of 2017 predictions has mostly worn off. I may still post it, but if not, I’ll just queue it to post during late December, so then we may look back and see how accurate my predictions are.

    Other than that, there are a few things that I’m looking forward to posting on this blog. There’s a lot I’m working on that I think will be very interesting for you to see! Among them are a painting, an ongoing fiction story, and maybe a contest or giveaway, in order to bring awareness to this blog. The new year will bring a lot of new content for you guys, so watch out for that! Posting more often will be in order too, and I hope to formulate a posting schedule, as well.