What happens when you make a bold choice that flies in the face of social attitudes? Pam Fitros and I talk about it on episode 1007 of my podcast, Rebuilding Your Life: Moving from Disaster to Prosperity (which is available on iTunes and Stitcher).
Pam went from living a pretty normal life to a head on confrontation with a hair obsessed world when an immune disorder called Alopecia Universalis caused her to lose all the hair on her body. Not only was it difficult to cope with the physical effects, but Pam found the emotional and societal impacts were challenging. When you see no one else in your community who looks as you do, feelings of panic, grief and mortification overwhelm you.
Pam learned that women are the most traumatized by baldness throughout social history. It makes for a $4.25 billion industry for people who are paying to hide the fact that they have no hair. But it’s also uncomfortable. Her early attempts to wear wigs and scarves as a solution only led to further discomfort and the desire to isolate even further from others.
Fortunately, an elderly woman who heard the distress in Pam’s voice cut through all of society’s filters and advised her to take the d…. thing off.” The advised resonated with everyone in the room so that is exactly what Pam did. Accepting what she could not change, she embraced it. She took off her wig and has never put it on again. Along the way, she has become comfortable with herself and is happy just the way she is.
As I’ve gotten to know Pam, I have found her to be witty, free spirited, lots of fun and compassionate. She now sees herself as someone who can help others who are at a loss to know how to cope with this condition through humor and stories. She lets them know that they are not alone. Pam, as a voice of positive change for the millions of women suffering from this immune disorder and others similar to it, is getting her empowering message of hope and courage out to others. She has a new podcast Boldly Bald Women: How to Survive and Thrive in a Hair Obsessed World. She has been spotlighted in the National Alopecia Areata Foundation Magazine, interviewed on the podcast Creating Change, is a member of the International Alopecia Day group as well as Alopecia World.com and several other international social media groups. She brought a group together to share their stories in a bestselling Amazon book, Boldly Bald Women for women who struggle with the emotional and societal impact of hair loss. Inside, they share their experiences and resources that are available to help members of their community.
Pam has three recommendations: accept the situation, help others feel more comfortable with it and take time to find others who face similar circumstances. Numerous survivors of disaster have found this advice works in other aspects of life. At some point, we each have the choice to make peace with what has happened to us or fall into despair and even die. The way out is through a hero’s journey, transforming ourselves first in order to move forward once again.
To learn more about Pam Fitros and how she helps others live with Alopecia, please check out her website: http://boldlybaldwomen.com. And, listen to the delightful Pam Fitros herself at: ssherayko.audello.com/podcast/2/ Rebuilding Your Life 1007 Pam Fitros on Living Bold.
May you gain some of Pam’s wisdom about life’s challenges through her story.
To Your Success,