That’s what I’ve been telling everyone who has curiously asked why I have abandoned my hair. I’ve always had long, full, beautiful hair. I was proud of my hair. I believed women who said a woman’s hair was an important part of her beauty. I grew up changing hairstyles every week and studying which hairstyle best framed my round face, full cheeks, and cute-as-a-button nose.
And then chemotherapy took that away.
The long hair,
The baby hairs
And shiny gloss.
Chemotherapy doctors are fond of encouraging patients to experiment with their new growth; dye it any fun colour they want, and style, however they deem fit. I belong to the small percentage of chemo patients who lost all their hair and all of a sudden wondered what the fuss has been all about.
After battling a disease or treatment that takes away your shine, your beauty, your bodily functions but doesn’t take your life, you begin to wonder if long hair is all its cracked up to be.
Samira Haruna Sanusi is a Nigerian writer and Sickle Cell awareness advocate. Samira is the President of the Samira Sanusi Sickle Cell Foundation, an Abuja-based NGO. She is also the author of “S is for Survivor”, a memoir about her personal experiences with Sickle Cell Anemia and getting cured. Her most recent book titled “I Wrote This For You” is a collection of prose, poetry, philosophical quotes and short essays.
c/o She Leads Africa