Joy After Alopecia is Finding Support. The Power of a Village: Support Systems Matter

Joy After Alopecia is a Journey that started long before the impact of this condition truly hit me.

All of my life, I have prided myself on establishing and maintaining strong relationships. Quite frankly until 2017, I hadn’t truly had to lean on my network of friends and family. 2017 was a test of my faith and honestly looking back on it now; it showed me who my “village” or “tribe” truly were. With notification of my dad’s Cancer diagnosis, I had prayer warriors which included my old Atlanta Church Impact Church and new Roosevelt Long Island Church, Memorial Presbyterian Church, my friends from old jobs, friends from new jobs, childhood friends etc. Daily I received prayers and encouragement. After my dad passed away I couldn’t function. I was grieving. I was depressed. I was angry. I was sad. My tribe surrounded me.

On April 2nd, 2019, I felt like someone kicked me in my chest. I felt angry again. I felt sad again. More importantly, I felt very frustrated and helpless. Similar to when I knew my dad was leaving, I felt like I had no control. My hair was falling out at a rate I couldn’t control or even anticipate. I had anxiety. I walked around in constant fear of my locs falling out. I cried on my coworkers shoulders many work days. I was literally crying in my car when my close friend Monique called to check on me. She allowed me to sit on the phone and just vent. Many of my friends gave me the space to do that. That was and continues to be priceless support.

Once I shaved my head, my tribe continued to show up for me. I received cards from fellow Clark Atlanta University alum, text messages, calls and messages on Facebook. I felt so loved and supported. Joy After Alopecia is Finding Support. Now my tribe has been expanded thanks to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation and their annual conference. I now know I am not alone and there are people I can call who are going through the same thing as me. I have also found support through sharing my journey on social media.

Hear more about my tribe here: https://youtu.be/3wPNRZnGAIU

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