End of an era! Chapter 2 begins

When you start with a title like that you really do have to go big or go home. If not then it would just seem that I turned into the type of writer to put big headlines just to pull in the readers (Buzzfeed anyone?).

This is actually one of the harder posts that I have ever written, not because I have somehow lost the use of my fingers or am trying to type it on a phone, but because of the thinking and decisions that have lead me to this point.

OK, so I will stop being overdramatic now and get to the point (although I do reserve the right to be dramatic later). I am not going to stop writing or disappear off the face of the earth… but I am going to cut my hair. We are not talking about a trim or a casual shorten. We are talking completely shaved off. Like shaved shaved. Like “with a razor”, super smooth, gone forever type of shaved.

It is a decision that I have not taken lightly and has actually been a few years in the making but I have now gotten to a point where it is annoying me so much that I just cant deal with it anymore.

“Thought you were leaving out the drama” is what I am sure most of you are thinking right about now as you read this, however that isn’t me being dramatic for a change. It is something that has been upsetting me and getting me down and something I need to take action on. With a little bit of back story I am sure it will all makes a bit more sense so please bare with me as I am sure this is all coming out in the wrong order but I just need to get it all down.

The Back Story

So about 2 years ago some of my hair started falling out. This was not a bit of middle aged thinning on my crown or something, it was waking up one morning to notice a coin sized piece of hair just missing overnight. That was a bit of a shock and at the time I put it down to stress at work and various other factors in my life that could be causing it and just tried to ignore it. By tying my hair back in a certain way it wasn’t noticable and so I just got on with things and tried not to think about it. Over time, rather than getting better things got worse. More hair started to fall out in the same area and eventually I dragged myself in to see the doctor to see if they could do anything about it. A few blood tests later and I got my fun diagnosis that didn’t exactly make things better but at least let me know why things were going a bit pear shaped.

The blood tests showed that I have something called Hypothyroidism, also known as an under-active thyroid gland, which was causing me the problems with my hair and also explained some other little things that I didnt associate at the time as issues. Now is time to break it down to the technical talk:

What is Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is a condition where the thyroid gland isn’t producing enough of the hormones needed to run the body correctly. The main purpose of the Thyroid gland is to control the bodies metabolism so with this screwed a whole lot of things tend to go out of whack!

What are the Symptoms

Some of the symptoms are noticeable whereas other only come into light when you are aware of them. For example, my hair falling out was caused by my bodies autoimmune response to not knowing what to do about the broken thyroid. Essentially my body decided to kill off the hair as an alien invader rather than just be chill about it.

Other things include tiredness (which I always was but just thought this was life) and weight gain caused by the fact that my body doesn’t burn off as much as it should. In the olden days this would maybe have been a good thing as I could have survived for ages with low food supplies, but in today’s day and age this just means that I ended up putting on loads of weight that was really hard to shift.

What is the cure

The “cure” is to take a little tablet each day that contains the relevant hormones that are supposed to do its job and level things out. The fact of the matter is though that this doesn’t really sort everything out and most of the symptoms have stayed the same. Who knows, maybe without the meds things would have gotten worse but for now, they don’t seem to be giving me any improvements.

What has this got to do with you shaving your head?!

Over the last few months, things with my hair has got worse again with some growing back but other parts going and to be honest, it is just pissing me off now. I want to get back into Juijitsu over here but I havnt yet gotten around to it. Part of the reason has been time but another factor is that I don’t want to roll about on the floor with my hair tied back when it will just come out of the hair bobble and then be obvious that it looks stupid and there is hair missing. That thinking has lead me to wear hats all the time (which I don’t mine) however it has now gotten to a point where I am very conscious that I always NEED a hat rather than just wanting to wear one which is a state I don’t like being in.

I think the worry about the hair added to the stress which may have been also making it fall out so all in all what a great cycle to be in!

It is with all that in mind that I decided that I need to just bite the bullet and cut it all off. It has taken a lot of thinking and made me quite nervous as I have had long hair for a long time and due to the way it is currently growing, once I do cut it there is not really any going back so it’s taken a while to psyche myself up to it. It is also annoying as once my head is shaved for the first few weeks my head is going to be a different colour to my face before it gets any sun on it. Yet another reason I have put it off until a time I can be away for work for a while and just let it sort its self out and come to terms with it myself without added work pressure.

I have been known by friends and family as Afrodan, Afro or Fro for the majority of my life now. My hair has, in one sense, been something that defined me which then also made it really hard for me to make such a drastic change. After I cut it all off I will literally have the opposite to an Afro so how can I continue to go by that name? This is the dilemma that I have had because the change is a permanent one and kind of changes who the person is that I define myself as. I know it can seem stupid to most but when you are known as the guy with the afro and you rock up with a skinhead it kind of seems a bit weird!

I talked to Padd a few days ago about my dilemma and the internal struggle and this is what he had to say:

This reminds me of the Ironman 3 subtext. How can he be Ironman without the suit?
How can Afrodan be Afrodan without the hairdo?

The thing is, the suit wasn’t Ironman, Tony Stark was. Just like the hair isn’t Afrodan, Daniel Rollins is.

So long as there is a Daniel Rollins, there will be an Afrodan.

I guess that sums it up really. I am still me and always will be no matter what happens. So with that, I have now booked in to get my hair cut off on Monday morning at 10.30am.

When I started writing this post it was titled “Afrodan is no more”. I know that seems a little over the top but it was how I was feeling. After the chat with Padd though it changed to “End of an era. Chapter 2 begins.” as it is now.

Everything will work out ok in the end. If it’s not ok its not the end!

28 Replies to “End of an era! Chapter 2 begins”

  1. Dude.. I can sort of relate to this. I have been going GREY for 10 years. I’m no ‘spring chicken’ by any means, but I’m now stuck in a relentless cycle of dying my hair to keep it from being obvious…

    It sounds like a tough decision, and I get that ‘fro will not be fro’d… But like you say, new chapter!! Good luck with the hair cut! You will always be afrodan to us!! X

  2. Wow, I agree totally with Padd for me of course the hair was the reason Afro began but it didn’t take long to realise your personality was just as big as the hair and as long as that continues you’ll always be Afro to me. I think you will look amazing with a shaved head and can’t wait to see a picture.
    Love you lots always xxxx
    PS I CARE xxxxx

  3. Padd as said it exactly because before there was a Afro/Afrodan/Fro there was an amazing young man called Daniel Rollins. I know this as been an issue with you for a while but with or without hair you are still the same young man we all admire and lovexxx cant wait for the selfies we can then call you Afrocool x

  4. Long live the Fro!

    Your hair does not define the awesome person you are. True, it is a visual signifier, a signage post to your personality, but it will not remove anything that makes you great. The signposts and directions in your life can change and you are the one person amongst a few that understand this.

    By treating it as the next chapter I know it will become another part of your story that you will smash!

  5. There’s not much to say that hasn’t already been said! All I want to say is I love YOU! YOU are my friend, YOU have been part of my life for so long, not just your hair, but ultimately it is YOU I love!! Just remember that xXx

  6. You’ll always be Afro Dan to us mate, big step with the hair, but I had exactly the same feelings when I had my hair cut off – yes I used to sport a good ponytail. You’ll not regret it in the long run, saves you a fortune on shampoo and hair dressers bills 🙂

  7. Daniel I too have faced the very same problem you face, having 1st suffered from a over active thyroid and now having a under active thyroid and having to pop those little pills for life ….but look through the negatives because at the end somewhere will always be a positive no matter how small. You’ve grown into a one of the nicest young man I know and I’m proud to call you my nephew…..you will get through this and Padd was right it’s not the hair but you…..look after yourself Afrodan

  8. Hey sweet,Padd is so right,but giggled at how he put it, you are you and nothing could change that, love ua fro xxxx

  9. You will always be Afrodan regardless of hair….Padds spot on.
    Just remember to pop suncream on your head as your going 2 steps further than the number 2 i have and i get burnt sometimes on my head lol.

    Craig

  10. This reminds me of when we was at school and you decided to actually grow it and invent your name “afrodan”, it was a chapter that carried on for years and years, and look how good that was… epic!

    Shave your head, it’ll help quit the worries about your hair issues and give you more time to focus on good stuff and less on stresses you don’t need.

    Regarding your name, A book’s cover doesn’t make a book what it is… its everysingle page inside that makes the story amazing. All you’re doing is changing the cover, the story is always going to be the same just a new capter started. 🙂

    Also, Less is more… White tshirts and jeans. (Zuckerburg has followed my trend… just with grey insead of white).

    Lastely, We want a photos! Going back, I think we have one of me you and teese when we was 14~15 years old (teese was holdig an inflatable banana…) and i don’t think you had the afro then, I know you looked bad ass then. So it’s all good.

    Would be a good comparison 🙂

  11. Well as your mum I never called you Afro anyway so no name change for me. Your beautiful smile is what makes you YOU. Have got plenty of sunscreen for you for holiday in February. Thinking about it you have had your hair tied back in a ponytail for years now. The big Afro style ended when you left school. Love you xxxxx

  12. While reading all of the comments I thought that I was the only person out of another loop. Then I got to your Mum’s !!!
    I thought that Afrodan was a title for your blog.
    So, Daniel, get the hair cut and eliminate that stress from your life.
    love Auntie Susie x

  13. Well written bro. Glad my random geekyness helped. Chapter 2 is going to piss all over ‘about 3/4 years ago’.

    I will leave you with the immortal words of akon x –
    “Was it the hair that got me this far?
    All these girls, these cribs, these cars?
    I hate to say it but it seem so flawed
    ‘Cause success didn’t come till I cut it all off”

  14. I’ve only ever known you as dan. And with or without hair, you’ll still be the dan I know.
    I’ll not repeat myself from the other day cos it was loooong ass but I will quote a certain awesome guy. “All will be good. Just look in the mirror and be like, damn I look good”!!
    That same guy also taught me about taking a leap of faith… Did you not? 😊
    It took kick ass courage to write what you have. The next part, at ten thirty, monday morning is just closure on one chapter and the start of embracing a second one.

    #still_afrodan 👊
    X

  15. Afrolessdan quick name change nobody will notice except Santa the toothfairy and Easter bunny. what’s the worst that can happen !!! you look like a nippleless tit for a few months then nobody will notice you had hair its a black thing.
    The only thing that will be noticed is by you in winter your head will be freezing. And come the summer you will notice some irritation you never had before that’s sun burn……

  16. Yeah I had it short back then but not as short as this. Glad I took the plunge and got it done. I will post some more stuff when I look at all the vid files

  17. always will. New haircut for a new life on the bottom of the world. New shaved head for summer (at christmas!)

  18. The next chapter will be a good one and it will start with me being bald but in shape. Gonna get hench and look like a beast!

  19. thank you. It feels to much better to just have it over and done with. I dont even think it is even how it looks (as it is a bit patchy looking) but it is the fact that I am not trying to hide myself any more

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