My Receding Hairline

I thought I was prepared. I’d read in several of my books and on websites about post-partum hair loss. During pregnancy, your hair falls out less frequently, which often leads to thicker, more luxurious looking hair. But once your baby is born, all those hairs that have been hanging out for a while start to fall out.
I began noticing a few weeks ago that I was losing more hair in the shower. Then about a week or so ago, I’d find myself holding a fistful of hair after lathering with shampoo, and another fistful after applying conditioner. Hairs would fly as I used the blow-dryer, and I was cleaning out my brush an awful lot.
Getting ready in the morning felt less like styling my hair, and more like grooming an Afghan Hound.
So now, part of my daily ritual includes pulling strands of hair off of Camille, who is usually covered in several and gripping several more. Yesterday, I leaned into her crib to look for her pacifier, and was shocked to find she’d been sleeping in a hairnest. I don’t spend a lot of time leaning into her crib – maybe a few seconds when I put her to bed at night and give her a kiss. So, judging by the amount of hair on the crib sheet (which is in the washing machine right now), I’m losing hair at the rate of 20 strands per nanosecond.
Until today, I’d found the whole thing a little amusing. I mean, it’s all part of having a child, so what good does it do for me to get upset? Instead, I started researching weaving techniques in the hope of making rugs with a never-ending supply of fiber from my head and from the dog and cat.
But this morning – just after I’d crawled around on the bathroom floor with a wad of toilet tissue, gathering all the stray hairs and throwing them away – I took a quick glance in the mirror and gasped. There, on the left side near my part, was a big patch of skin. Nearly hairless.
I am balding.
The good thing about working where I do is that I’m surrounded by medical professionals. Tomorrow, I’m going to ask one of my doctor friends if this amount of hair loss is normal. If not, I’ll be making an appointment with my doctor and a wig shop.
Meanwhile, I consulted one of my trusted websites to see what they had to say on the matter. They assured me it was quite normal, and that my hair would return to pre-pregnancy status by Camille’s first birthday. It’s going to be a long, cold winter for my head.
But of course, the website couldn’t offer reassurance without throwing in a bit of terror. Turns out, my hair loss isn’t just an inconvenience – IT COULD BE A DANGER FOR CAMILLE!
The website states:
“A note to new moms with long hair: Strands of hair can end up tightly wrapped around your baby’s tiny appendages, including his fingers, toes, wrists, ankles, and penis. This is called a “hair tourniquet” and it can be quite painful for your little one. If you find him crying for no apparent reason, check carefully for tight bands of hair.”
Give me a break. This is one thing I’m just not going to worry about. If I notice a “hair tourniquet,” I’ll free her. But I’m not losing sleep over this one.