bo/ald

Today, I was bald. Bald in the street. Bald shopping. Bald eating a doughnut. Bald drinking early gray tea and gossiping with my friend A. Bald picking up an iPhone case that doesn’t fit my iPhone from FedEx. The thing about being bald? It’s bold. It’s brave.

Also, I did bald karaoke. I mean, I didn’t actually get to sing bald, because the bar was packed, but I was at a karaoke bar birthday party and I was bald and it was kind of awesome.

The other day, I was in yoga. There was a bald man practicing next to me. I was wearing a scarf. And I was like, since when do men have a monopoly on bald? I mean, really. So I took my scarf off, and I was bald, and I touched my forehead to my knee in standing head to knee like a bad-ass. Which of course, led to me going bald-shopping, bald-biking, and bald-doughnut-eating.

It occurs to me that we ought to think more carefully about our days. About how we are in the world. About how we express our love and care and hope and fear and surprise. The chorus of an old campfire song comes to mind:
On the loose to climb a mountain, // On the loose where I am free. // On the loose to live my life, // The way I think my life should be. // For I’ve only got a moment, // And a whole world yet to see, // And I’ll be searching for tomorrow, on the loose.

It’s true. We’ve only got a moment, and the whole yet to see. What part of the world will you see? We live in a world vast enough, unknown enough, big enough that an entire commercial jet can vanish, and we can not know where it is, we can not know how to find it. There is so much we do not know. We live in a world, where sometimes, cells can morph and multiply uncontrollably, and we do not know how, or why, or how to fix it, or if we’ve fixed it. We live in a world where it seems like we can know everything, but really, there is such a vastness out there that we do not know, that we cannot know.

And so it makes sense, given that we play on the terrain of so much not yet known, to be bold. To live our lives “the way I think my life should be” because after all, “I’ve only got a moment, and a whole world yet to see.” Today, I was bald, and people looked. I could see it as their eyes squinted, and I could have captioned their thought bubble “Does she have cancer? Did she just shave her head? Why would you do that if you didn’t have cancer? But she’s so young. Could she have cancer?” And yet, all I can think is, who cares about their stupid squinty-eyed thought bubble? For I’ve only got a moment, and a whole world yet to see….

Being bald feels fearless. It feels strong. It feels b<o/a>ld, with an appropriate possibility for slashes and dashes mid-word. It feels unapologetic. Maybe I should do it more often. After all, we’ve only got a moment, and we just don’t know how long our moments will last.

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2 thoughts on “bo/ald

  1. You made me think of my amazing and wonderful mother today with your comments about being bald. My mom would be in a bank line, or a store and all of a sudden whip off her scarf showing her beautiful bald head. I think she enjoyed the reactions of those around her. Whether she wore a wig, a scarf or nothing, I love her strength, sense of humor and inner beauty. Thank you for the reminder.

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