This year I had decided to participate in Shave for a Cure to help raise funds for Leukeamia NZ. I had wanted to write a couple of blog posts during the last month I that had been fundraising, but things have been a bit full on this term, so I have been a bit behind with my blog posts at the moment.
I suppose I should start with why I decided to shave my hair off for Leukeamia. For me, it was more of a personal challenge to myself. At the time I was struggling with my role in life and work. I wasn’t happy with where I was at this stage of my life, or with how the near future was looking like for me. I think I would of been fine if I felt like it was all for a purpose, but I honestly didn’t feel as though all my efforts were really making any difference. It left me feeling frustrated, trapped, and a bit resentful as well.
Then I saw a post on Facebook about participating in Shave for A Cure. It was something that I had briefly thought about doing a while ago, but never really actually considered shaving – a few coins in the bucket was fine for me. But this time something really resonated with me, and I found myself seriously thinking about it. By participating and raising money, I would be able to help someone who really needed it. The money raised from this event would help create information packs for those who have just started their battle and emergency funds for those struggling to pay for the costs of travelling for their treatments so they don’t have to choose between getting better or buying food for their family. It also provides counselling sessions for those who have lost their loved ones to Leukeamia and support groups. And I needed something to remind me that I was able to make a difference to somebody’s life, that when I was feeling a bit hopeless and dispirited, I could look in the mirror and be reminded that I have been able to do something good for someone else. Not an entirely selfless motive I guess, but it became important to me so I broke the “bad” news to my husband (bald!?!) and signed up for Shave for a Cure!
I don’t have a particularly big network so I my goal was to raise at least $200 within a month. For a while there I really didn’t think that I was going to make it – I was hammering my Facebook and Twitter contacts, guilt-tripping rellies etc. A couple of plans that I had fell through as well so was a bit concerned. Then a good mate of mine donated and helped to get the word out and then it started to flow. By Shave Day I had $175 raised, and a couple of donations received during that weekend took up my total to $220! It may seem like a small amount compared to others, but every dollar counts so I am proud to have made the effort to help out.
So my Shave Day was during the official Shave Week, which was 20th-26th March 2017. You could do the shave at any time, but I wanted to do it during the official week. One of the lovely ladies I work with is also a hairdresser so she offered her razor and home for a good cause. The rest of the Supported Learning Team decided to get in on the action so it became a Shave and Party afternoon! I wasn’t the only shavee in the end – another one of our team mates had joined the school shave team (I had started earlier), and couldn’t do the shave on their date as they were doing it at the end of school term, so she joined me for my shave instead as they had already reached her goal amount (over $1500 at the moment!). Generally the concept is that you are to go completely bald, but you’re allowed to go up to a #4 size – women tend to go for a #3 – #4, while men usually go for a #1 – #2 size. I compromised with my husband and chose to go for a #4 cut, which is about 12mm long. Not completely bald, but it is still shaved. I was doing pretty well for the most part until I was sitting in the chair and heard the razor turn on – was a little bit nervous then! She was really good though and started at the back so it wasn’t too abrupt. I didn’t have really long hair, but I had never been that short before so was a bit surprised by the end result! I had also never been without a fringe either, so was a bit of a shock, but it didn’t look as bad as I thought it would – I have been quite a few compliments over the week. I am fortunate though – this was a choice for me, there are many out there that were never given that luxury so it has also been a humbling experience as well.