This past Sunday I did the only brave thing I’ve done since the cancer diagnosis. I went to church bald. Or, like nearly bald. Whatever this mangey, salt and pepper thing I’m sporting is, I kinda hate it. But, none of the hat or scarf options looked right with my dress or my face, so I just went “as-is”.
It was my turn to make coffee and prepare communion. I thought that maybe I’d go early and leave asap so I could avoid seeing people. But that would mean avoiding my people; the people I love. On some level, I wanted to protect these people from having to figure out how to react to the weirdness of my new look. I wanted to protect myself from both having to be the pitiful chemo girl and to overlook that my church family had to struggle through playing it cool. I imagined darting eyes during conversations. I thought I would feel uncomfortable stares as I sat in the pew. This would be a morning that I’d have to give lots of grace. Or so I thought.
Dear Church Family,
You were amazing. I wish I was wearing a GoPro so you could see you through my eyes. You high-fived me. You felt my hair (what’s left of it). You affirmed my head shape. You looked me in the eyes. If you stared at my head, I didn’t notice. Honestly, I really wouldn’t have cared, because that would be normal. I have tears as I think of all the grace I ate up on Sunday morning. (And I haven’t even mentioned the sermon, worship and prayer!) It’s always the good stuff that makes me cry the most. You win. And I win, because of you. And we win, because God clearly has blessed us! And we are gonna be alright.
A special nod to the men of Trinity City Church. You guys. You’re not afraid to show affection through a hug or an affirmation of “you look awesome” to the newly bald girl. Most churches, the ladies will usually be nice to ladies, but men get a little uncomfortable. But, you men, you know how to treat the women of Trinity with dignity. Just felt like you needed to know.
And now a few bald-headed and bare-faced selfies. I should have my cosmetologist license revoked for this indecent exposure! I give a thumbs down to hair loss, but a thumbs up to people being awesome.