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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Trich (Hair Pulling) - My struggle goes on

Right now I feel tingling. On my scalp. I do not feel stressed but my hands want to pull.  They want to sort out the bad hairs and feel victorious once I free them from their prison, my head.  I feel instant joy and then instant disappointment that I've done this again, and again throughout the day. I needed that hair that took two years to grow and now its gone.  But I want to keep going, because its soothing.  To pick out perfections, to make myself more perfect.  I don't cognitively access this, I just behaviorally, unconsciously do.  All day long I go through this cycle.  Feeling, pulling..happy, sad, disappointment.  I feel more perfect, yet more ugly, because I've done what you shouldn't... I hate it, I hate myself for doing it but I keep going.

Right now I'm typing, but my head is tingling and I'd rather stop typing and start twirling my hair...and if I find a bad one, a course hair I will pull it out and feel successful.  It's sad.  I hate it.

But why do I want to do it so badly?  Why is it so awesome, yet so awful.  I'm getting a haircut on Friday so I can start fresh for the 3rd time.  3rd time I've gotten a haircut to fix what I've ruined.  This way I wont look at myself frustrated, mad and angry that I've made my hair look uneven and I always feel disgusting.  I want to grow my hair long, but right now I'm trying to even out the unevenness.  It's not pretty, well not to me.

I want to wash my hair everyday now, sometimes multiple times.  To start over, to feel clean, to reset my scalp because after a shower I haven't pulled yet and I feel like I don't have an issue, until I do and then it's all downhill from there.  It literally is like an itch you can't scratch.

Now, I've alllllways played with my hair and twirled and braided but it wasn't until the texture changed that i started pulling.  It's been a year now and luckily I can hide it mostly, but it there, people notice and people comment on my pulling out my hair.  Whats even worse is that after I pull, I curl it with my teeth.  I feel the hair and the coarseness and then curl it like a ribbon in scissors.  It's become such an odd habit but I do it anyway and people have pointed out that that is weird as fuck.  It's true, it is.

I guess I have worked on my anxiousness in many ways.  Therapy, meds, meditation...my stomach problems have ceased.  But it seems my anxious energies get out in this malignant form that's common in women in their late twenties. I'm hoping that writing this out will help me acknowledge this very real problem and not let me pretend it's not a big deal.  It's affecting my life, how people view me and my ability to grow out my hair and feel beautiful.

I am not unhappy, I am great. But this is hurting me. I am hurting myself.  I used to have awesome long hair and now I am just trying to fix it all the time.  I'm hoping that this haircut, this time and some Cognitive Behavioral Therapy will help me overcome and crack the habit.

Has anyone reading had any issues with this or found something that was successful for them? Please share/email/tweet me!

@alexinhwood

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Aging is Awesomer than you think


I think people have it all wrong.  Youth is admired yes, a youthful appearance is nice, I guess.  But man do I enjoy getting older.  I love being wiser and understanding things more deeply.  I love being able to walk away from negative people and situations.  I love not wanting to fit in as badly, because it's not the end of the world, but at 16, it really was.

I dislike it when people say they wish they could back to high school.  Of course the people who say that were probably on a sports team or really popular....because NO ONE wants to go back to high school.  Yes breasts were perkier, libidos stronger and cliques more powerful but I am so happy to be beyond all of that.

When I was in high school, all I wanted was to belong, look mature and to be able to be free.  I was not independent like some kids are.  I was sheltered and afraid of pretty much everything.  I was singing Mandy Moore songs in the mirror and trying to look older with terrible makeup. I wanted to be admired by boys and I wanted to be invited to things, to belong, to be cool.

That's pretty typical.  Being a teenager has its ups and downs but I would never want to be younger again!  I remember asking my mother, "Mom? Will I always look like this?  Will I really look like a woman one day?"   She assured me that I would indeed mature and that being youthful for now was a good thing.  No one wants to grow up too fast.  I really felt like a little kid for a long time.  I didn't drive until I was a sophomore in college. I didn't have a boyfriend until I was 21.  I'm what you call, a late bloomer, in every way.

While I took longer than others to mature, I can say now at 27.5 years old, I LOVE my age, my body and my mind.  It's taken me this long to love myself.  I finally do not feel like a little boy.  I have grown into myself and each day my mind understands and evolves.  I for one, have done the work however, on self-love.

Self-love should be your greatest love story.  It should be more important than how many people admire you, how many boyfriends you have or how many Facebook likes validate your identity.  Your brain is not fully mature until after 25.  Let me say that again, YOUR BRAIN IS NOT FULLY MATURE UNTIL AFTER 25!  So yeah, all those choices you've made, they were choices but also know you may reap consequences for them.  I have always known I wouldn't marry young, and in that I want to love myself and know myself before I commit my life to another being.  Life, with all of its turbulence, it can make a person do and feel crazy things.  We are in fact human to not always pick and do the right thing, but the point is now to love yourself.

Beauty is in aging.  What you may think is your greatest flaw, is probably your most unique factor.  Imagine what and who you could be and become if you embraced your uniqueness, instead of tearing yourself down.  Why must we all emulate the photo-shopped unrealistic images we see, when that is not beauty, but it is what we are told is to be desired.  Imagine if we didn't want to be Barbie; imagine we honored our health and our brains more than frailty and exterior beauty.

I look in the mirror now and I see the woman I always wanted to be.  I see freckles in some places, dimples in others.  I see muscles I could tone more and a stomach I could tighten, but I know that this person is me, and it's all I'm ever going to be, ME.  How I take care of my body is on me.  I choose to cherish it, nurture it and respect it as I age, evolve, grow.

I encourage my readers to look in the mirror each day and say 3 things that are positive about yourself! DO it! Try it! Imagine what that is like, to praise yourself for your unique qualities.  They aren't flaws, they are you.  Loving yourself is probably going to be a great journey.  It's not how other people view you that is important.  And if that is most important to you then something isn't working.  Don't give everyone else the power to tell you who you are.  YOU are in charge.  You are beautiful. You are you.

So test yourselves, for a few days, a week, hell, even for Lent.  3 things daily, that you love about yourself.

I'll start....

I love my breasts

I love my expressive personality

I love my willingness to change...


YOUR TURN!!


Monday, March 3, 2014

POSHMARK: Buying and Selling Your Closet


Hey Alexinhwood Fans!

I am selling things from my personal closet!  Poshmark is an amazing platform for one to do so.  I have already sold and bought a few items and I could not be happier.  I am excited to Posh more and more!

Check out my items and get the APP! It's great and easy to use and there are awesome products on the site.  From Coach to Michael Kors to anything you can think of!  Add me and I'll add you back!!

Happy Selling and Happy Buying!!

Best,
@alexinhwood

Friday, February 28, 2014

Stream of Consciousness

I read an article recently having to do with being in love with love.  Or chasing that feeling of drama and excitement and dating people you know are wrong for you.  Then you get all upset that they don't treat you right and you can do better; but you torture yourself because it's love, right? RIGHT? Doubtful.  There are so many different forms of love.  How do you know for sure its the good kind, the right kind, is there a right kind of love?  I know there's healthy and unhealthy love, but what is the best kind and can it last?

I used to be afraid to find my person.  I wanted it so badly, but in my mind also I was terrified because, when the search is over, are you bored? Relieved? Stuck? Happy?

A lot of my life has been encloaked in fear.  As a kid and also as an adult, I had to learn face it straight on, versus cowering and running away and feeling that feeling where you really wish you could avoid the trouble and disappear completely.  This somehow taught me to be depressed and feel trapped all of the time.  I felt that the world was against me, crushing me, hating me.  But it was how I was addressing the world that kept me so low.  It was how my brain perceives pain, interactions and ultimately, the intensity of emotions.  My brain accentuates the emotions to an unrealistic and unmanageable level.  I have spent my young adult life, testing and trying to make this easier for me and others with therapy and medication.  Some people just need regulators and I am one of those people.  I am not damaged or crazy, I just need some direction, some calm added to my overactive emotions.

Now that I feel like I have handle on things, I feel sometimes that I don't feel enough.  I've spent 27 years overwhelming myself and everyone around me and now I'm just fine. FINE.  Fine is boring, okay is boring. BUT it is manageable and I'm not constantly angry and hating everything, and I am not crying for no reason

Its a learning time, a confusing time..  I know so much more about what I need from myself and from others.  I guess I am lucky that way so I know so much, that I've done the work.  Some never do it, and some don't until way later in life.  I am so aware, sometimes I am taken out of the present, because I'm busy processing.  So I try to be mindful of my actions and thoughts but also exist more in the present so I can enjoy my experiences as they happen.

I am still ripping out my hair.  I cannot figure out how to stop.  I know I shouldn't but I do it anyway.  I can't decide if I am punishing myself or if its really just stress and anxiety coming out one way or another.  My fear is that I will have terrible ugly hair and that I won't be able to hide what I have done.  I'm so scared but I cannot stop.

I feel like I am okay.  I'm not unhappy.  But something is off again.  I can't pin point what it is.  My body needs some attention...I need something... I don't know what it is.  But something is off...

Somehow I am not connecting, and I am not sure how to re-engage.  I am open about my needs mostly, but I don't feel like that they are being attuned to.  There's a distance and there's a closeness I crave from the one that is near, but isn't.  maybe that's where all the anxiety is from...I'm giving all of myself....again...and I'm not sure what I am getting is enough.   Will anyone be able to give me what I need?  Am I even worthy?  Why am I so willing to give and others so afraid?  Why am I always exhausted?


Monday, February 17, 2014

Expectation Vs Reality : Valentine's Day

What is it about Holidays, Birthdays, Days...

Expectations build and suddenly you are freaking out, caring too much, or not caring at all.  What are the meanings of these feelings?

Valentine's Day comes around and you HAVE to be romantical or come up with the perfect thing to sum up all the things you feel.  Even if you are in a relationship, you cant help but feel that you are supposed to do something...why, why whyyyyyyy.....so much pressure for guys and girls alike...so dumb, SO DUMB.

I for one put a lot of pressure on myself to create moments, magical ones and I get bent out of shape when it doesn't go according to plan...

This year I was already having an off day on valentine's day and I didn't want to admit it.  I am human after all but because it was Valentine's day I was supposed to be happy. in love and romantic.  But I just wasn't feeling it.  I was feeling weird and just could not shake this off feeling.  I had been harboring some emotions that I needed to get out, but I didn't want to ruin the day.

Man, that will kill you...holding things in...so in my attempt to blow over the weirdness I ended up just being awkward and weird and boy could he tell something was up.  And what happened was way better than faking it, way better than playing into supposed-to-bes. Me and the boy talked, we talked it all out and spoke about feelings and emotions we hadn't before and it was sooo good and cathartic.  I was supposed to be cooking our craftily planned dinner but instead we hashed it out, and man was that what I needed.  WHO THE EFF CARES about making it the perfectly romantical Hallmark card of a night.  He actually wanted to listen and talk and work it out because we are in the relationship together.

I cannot tell you how amazing it feels to have someone on the same team...

Why did I do this to myself?  Work myself into a tense ball over what? VALENTINE'S DAY?  I felt stupid and silly....but I do like to have cute dates and moments...but one thing I've learned is that I am human and so is he and sometimes you may not be 100% and that doesn't mean you RUINED EVERYTHING.  It's just a day, and this must be growing up.

I hope I have many other days with my man.  Birthdays, Christmases, and all sorts of celebrations...but they are just days and we are just us...

Sometimes you just have to let it go, the assumptions, the expectations and all that, the supposed-to-bes.  I am learning to accept myself more and more everyday and in that learning how to love another better and better.  When you find the right person, they will hold your hand and not expect you to be perfect, and after the tears, and laughter you can then make dinner, open some wine and smile, knowing this isn't the end...this is a wonderful place to be, imperfect, silly, loving, accepting...with you....and me.

Friday, January 24, 2014

I WON A BLUE NILE RING via Twitter Contest!

All those Twitter contests out there, I mean who honestly wins...well this time I DID!! And boy am I lucky! Blue Nile Diamonds gifted me a $250 gift card to their online boutique of Diamonds and Jewelry! 



I suggest you all check out their selection! I could not be happier with my ring. I love it so much!



Sorry I am not a hand model...lol I really do love it and I want eveyone to check out Blue Nile!

Follow them on Twitter and Instagram

You could win too so enter their contests online! 
Happy shopping!

Monday, January 13, 2014

BEAUTY: Hair Therapy and Growth

Hey all!  So I cut my hair to deal with my "fun" bad habit of pulling out my hair.  My stylist in San Diego is amazing and she knows what to do with me.  I was good for a little bit but now I been bad at pulling again.  So now it's time to get serious because I actually want to grow out my hair and to grow back the hair I've pulled.

So far this is my regimen and I will keep you All posted on results.

For last 5 months I have been taking these supplements to help


3 times a day, with meals

Try for twice a day with breakfast and dinner

I also just started using Mane 'n Tail to help with growth and strength
I like my results so far.
You can purchase anywhere they sell shampoo.

I use these hair fibers to fill in my part or top of my crown on spots where I have pulled out too much hair.
Yes it is embarrassing, but I need to come to terms with my bad habit and I'm trying to make it better.
You can get these hair fibers at Walgreens, Rite Aid or where they sell other Vivscal Products.  


I will keep you posted on my results!
So far I've already had two haircuts so I know my hair is growing more quickly.  Since the pulling started in February last year, most of those original hairs from my center part, side part and crown have grown back pretty well, except for the gray hairs I keep finding and some I've pulled out.   
For me this has to do with texture and not much else.  
I don't want to pull out my hair but I just tend to do it when I'm reading or doing other things.
I love tweezing my eyebrows so I know I've had a compulsion for pulling unwanted hairs.
I'm trying to get to the bottom of it and to have my full head of hair back soon!

Until then its hiding it, creative styling and vitamins! :D

Wish me luck!

FOR MORE INFO ON Trichotillomania


THANK YOU

I just want to say thank you to everyone who has read my blogs.  I definitely take breaks from time to time but it is amazing to be able to connect with people all over.  I have grown so much and I happy to have been able to type out my feelings and evolve.


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