Taking out my extensions – for now

Posted: June 14, 2016 in Recovery
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Wow, I am such a slacker. Well, as far as keeping up with my blog goes. The rest of my life is so organized it’s ridiculous. I guess that is a pro of having OCD-like tendencies, right?! The glass is half full!

So back in the beginning of April I went in to have my extensions moved up. Well, it had been so long since they were put in my natural hair that had grown out was all dreadlocked, so the stylist (who is wonderful, by the way) had to take them all out and put them back in again. It took more than seven hours. Ya, don’t do that.

It’s now mid June, and not wanting to make that mistake again, I have been trying to get a hold of my stylist. Mind you she is doing most of this for me for free, so I am not pushing for an appointment too hard. . .

Long story short, she’s pretty occupied with family stuff right now so I won’t be able to see her for a bit. She said that when I do come back in she’ll need to take all of the extensions out so she can re-glue the tips.

One thing that I did not know about hair extensions — they fall out. The groups of hair are held together with glue, then a tiny bead is wrapped around the extension. The stylist takes a small piece of your natural hair and threads it through the bead with the extensions and then crimps the bead tight.

Well, after daily shampoos, brushing, etc. the glue and/or bead can loosen and the extension falls out. It’s pretty embarrassing. Luckily I have not had one fall out in a public place. I have had them fall out at work before, just while sitting at my desk, and in the car, but they mostly come out in the shower.

Anyway, since I had them re done in April I have had quite a few of them come out, especially from the areas where I continue to pull.

To top that off I attended a work function last weekend, and someone took a picture of me from the side. He sent me the picture and I realized that the beads for all my extensions were showing! How mortifying! It was so obvious that they were there, and I’d been walking around all day with the thought that no one knew I had them.

So last night, knowing that they would all have to come out anyway and not wanting to continue to have one side of my head have more hair than the other, I decided to take them all out. Yee-ouch!

Some of them were already loose and they just slid right off. I took those out first, but then of course my hair was even more lopsided, so I had to get all of them out. There was no turning back at that point! Some of them were so tight I literally had to cut them out. It may seem counter productive to cut my hair when I am trying to grow it out, but only the bottom is connected to the extension, so I really was not cutting too much off. Besides, I look at it as “evening things up.”

It took me much longer than I thought it would, and I did it right before bed (smart, right?) so then I had to try to sleep with a raging headache from all the pulling on my scalp. Yee-ouch!

I had not seen my natural hair since I first had the extensions put in. I was amazed at how much it has grown! Of course it is no where near where I would like it to be, but there is some actual length to it. My husband even commented on how much longer it is. He said he had not seen my hair that long in a long time.

I had forgotten how thin it is, though. I am really helping it continues to grow naturally and thickens up. I am hoping and praying I did not do permanent damage.

When I came to work today I thought for sure somebody would say “You cut your hair!” but no one did. I am proud of the fact that I did not wear a hat today. Before I had the extensions I had to wear a hat everyday to even so much as leave the house. No hat for me today! It feels good, it feels lighter. It feels like I have made some progress.

I am trying to decide if I will have the extensions put back in or if I should just continue to try to grow my hair out naturally. I must say that I look much better with long hair. I kind of grossed myself out last night when I looked in the mirror sans extensions. But maybe having them in was just the push I needed to work on this, seeing myself with long hair was an inspiration to fight TTM more. I honestly don’t think I could fight it any more than I have already, but I am not going to give up, I am going to keep trying to find other outlets and resources.

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