For over 15 years I have had the same prayer request and for 15 years - GOD HAS TOLD ME NO!
I guess I'd better explain myself. Since I was a baby - I have lived the life of a movie - sometimes it was full of drama but most of the time it felt more like a horror movie! Beginning at age 9, it became evident to me that I was not like the other kids - I was different.
It all started when a series of events as an infant caused me to have some physical problems including immune problems, I was very sickly and my hair began to fall out. They soon diagnosed me with a disease called Alopecia Areata. The only explanation of this disease that I was given was "Male pattern baldness." As I was approaching my teens I really had a hard time accepting this diagnosis for two reasons,
ONE: and most obviously, I am not a man
TWO: The only pattern it went in was the flower pattern on my pillow case!!!
So, I started visiting with different doctors who all gave me different opinions and this continues true to this day. But, after 15 years, and MANY doctors, tests and shots - I'd love to give you details of what is wrong with me and tell you about this wonderful cure they've found - but that's not the case. 15 years later we still know nothing.
I'll answer the question I'm sure you're asking, Yes, I am bald but I do wear a wig. I have not had hair since I was nine years old and I have kept it a secret for 15 years.
Anyway, I can remember being a small child and having a doctor give me shots in the head. I remember two things about this. One memory is of the shot itself. That thumping sound is one that you never forget. Even though I was probably like three or four, I can still hear that sound. THUMP! I don't remember the shots hurting but the pressure of it hitting the top of my head and that thumping sound - haunts me to this day. I guess that's just the faith of a chilld for you because if I had to do it today - I don't think I could.
The second memory is of Me and My mom walking in the Kmart parking lot and I'm holding hands with Fonzy telling him to come on. Fonzy was my invisible friend who went every where with me! He was really cool.
Most of my memories are from my school
years. I had to wear a wig in school and I was so afraid to go to school
because either someone would pull off my wig or they would torment me.
These were not just fears - they were daily my reality. There were a lot
of nicknames for me and I never really had a name - I was simply known
as "that girl that wears a wig."
Needless to say, I never had a boyfriend and my friends were few but very appreciated!
The fear and anguish of high school went on until I eventually quit school in the 10th grade. I quit for many reasons, the first one being that I had gotten sick - missed some days, and even though I made up all of my school work, they were still going to fail me. I was in 10th grade in college classes and for the first time in YEARS was making straight A's. Then, as I was contemplating quitting school - my principle told my Dad that "Jesus Christ has never and will never teach a class as this school." This made me furious and so the next day, I turned in my books and told this same principal that where my God is not welcome - I will not be. I never stepped foot in that school as a student again. Within a month, I passed the GED with flying colors and received my High School diploma.
Honestly, those were the reasons I thought about quitting but it was the escape from my miserable life that was the deciding factor. I was to a point where I couldn't take anymore. After all, the year before I quit school, I was so sick that I did not even want to live, especially my life. I went to bed every night thinking I would not wake up the next morning - that's how sick I was. When I did wake up, I'd sit all day and pray, "God take me home today." I begged God to please just take me home.
Just a note, here I'll let you know that at thirteen, because of my condition - I was told that I would go through menopause in my teens and never be able to have children. My friends also warned me growing up that most likely no man would ever want to be married to a bald woman - so I'd probably never get married.
Another troublesome piece of "advice" I received was, "if you'll just have faith - God will heal you." When I wasn't healed, well then, I just didn't have faith. My grandmother, I called her EE, said it best when she would reply, "When Jesus wants her to have hair - He'll give her hair." Not theological, but hey - people sure did hush after she said it. But you know what, she was right. The thing that people forgot to tell me about faith was the simple promise of - IN GOD'S TIME!
I would like to stop for a moment and give you all a piece of advice now. When asking personal questions about people - anybody - choose your words very carefully. No matter how much it bugs you to know if someone's hair is real or not, or any other personal question you may come up with - just remember this..."Is satisfying your curiosity worth making another person question God?" That's what people pointing, touching my hair, asking me point blank "Is that a wig" and even pulling my wig off - has done to me. It brought me to a point where I questioned God's love and faithfulness.
Now, 15 years after losing all of my hair, 15 years of public humiliation (Yes, people still make fun of me to this day), after knocking on death's door, after 15 years of crying myself to sleep, after 15 years of praying the same prayer for God to heal me and after 15 years of God telling me, "No." - I'm here to tell you,
God is good. God is faithful and God has not forsaken me yet.
I still pray that same prayer, now 15 years later. But recently God's answer has not been "no," It's been "GO." God has called me into a ministry of simple telling people - it's ok to be different. And finally, after 15 years, I have decided to Follow Jesus - No turning back, No turning back.
I appreciate you allowing me to share my testimony with you. Please pray for me as I tell my story to others and pray that I can encourage people to allow their differences to glorify God. You see all of my life, I thought God had cursed me with this illness but in fact, he was seasoning me all along for His greatness.
The high school principal I told you about, told my Dad that I wouldn't amount to very much. He said that since I was a drop out that no one would ever want to listen to what I had to say. So today, I just want to thank you for listening.
And, for those of you who do not know me, I've been married now for 3 years, I have two beautiful children and two beautiful step-children. So hey, four kids by age 23 is not so bad. I'll say it again - God is good, all the time.
If you have any questions, comments or
would like more information on my ministry - please email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org