Wednesday, March 04, 2009

A Ponytail for A Good Cause

Almost a year and a half ago, my dear sweet Aunt Cass was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was a shock to us needless to say. She took quick action and did what needed to be done to save her life. It did, however, mean that she would lose her hair...in winter...in Minnesota. Not a fun prospect, but she did it. My little brothers decided to show some solidarity and shaved their heads too. I, however, wasn't quite ready to do that...so I sent flowers instead.

But, last Spring I did get some inspiration about something I could do to help women in my aunt's situation. I saw a rerun of Oprah in which actress Hillary Swank had Oprah cut off 9 inches of her hair to donate to the Pantene Beautiful Lengths program. Through this program, Pantene aims to support women who have lost their hair during cancer treatment by providing free wigs made of donated hair. To make one real-hair wig, it takes six ponytails and about three to four months! As the Pantene wigs are made, they are distributed for free to cancer patients through select American Cancer Society wig banks across the country. Ultimately, the number of free wigs that are available depends entirely on how many ponytails are donated.

At that moment, I knew that I wanted to donate my hair. Well, at the time, I was still adjusting to life with two kids and didn't even have a hairstylist. So, I let my hair grow and grow. Then, I made the connection that a friend from MOPS is a hairstylist, and I talked to her about cutting my hair. But, even then, I still didn't make the appointment out of sheer laziness, having to find a sitter, etc. Now 1 1/2 years after my last professional haircut, I was in desperate need of a new look. Plus, my hubby had started referring to me as a "mountain woman" so I knew that it was time!

Thankfully, my friend Joanne kindly agreed to watch my kiddos, and my friend Michele kindly agreed to cut my hair! Without telling Brett about my plans, this morning I headed off to do something good and get a new look! I was kinda amazed by how long my hair was! See?!




If anyone in SYV is looking for a great haircut, Michele is your gal! (She works at Hats Off Hair in Santa Ynez - 693-9660.) She was able to cut off about 13 inches and my hair is still long enough to fit in a ponytail (albeit a short one). Here is my donation...



As for the haircut, I love it. Michele is so great! We talked for a bit about what style to do, and I confessed that I'm pretty low-maintenance when it comes to my hair. So, she gave me a style that can look pretty modern if I want to blow dry & straighten it AND that can be very easy if I just use a tad bit of product on the ends and let it air dry. I love it...and so does my husband! He noticed it almost immediately and was pleasantly surprised by the change.



So, tomorrow I will be sending off my ponytail to Beautiful Lengths for donation! If you're interested in donating hair, the two programs that I know of are Pantene Beautiful Lengths (for women with cancer) and Locks of Love (for children with long-term hair loss from any medical diagnosis). Go to their websites for more information on how to donate!



7 comments:

Jamie said...

You ROCK and you look fabulous!!!!!!!!!!

Rebecca said...

Yea! It looks so good.

Ribbens Family said...

I love it!! I donated to locks of love a few years ago and have been trying to grow it out again to donate it...I think it is almost long enough. What made you go with Pantene versus Locks of love?

Caleb's Momma said...

So awesome you donated, and I LOVE the new hair do. Looks great on you...I know what Brett is thinking. I bet he has his busines socks on!

Janel said...

Thanks for the compliments everyone! I am enjoying my new hairdo.

Sara - I chose Pantene because they make free wigs for women with cancer. My aunt was going through breast cancer treatment when I decided to donate. She has a masectomy, chemo and radiation and ended up losing her hair. So, I felt compelled to give to Pantene. Maybe next time I'll do Locks of Love...if I can stand growing my hair out that long.

Jill - You are too funny! I totally started laughing when I read your comment. :)

Brett Piersma said...

"Ah yeah, baby, that's it"
"Two minutes in heaven are better than one minute in heaven."

Rachelle said...

Your hair is adorable! You look so young! I can't believe how long your hair got since I saw you last! Nice job!

miss you, love you, squeeze my nieces for me!