Happy December! Happy Holiday Season!
But before we get into holiday season topics and features, taking a few minutes today to talk about another issue dear to my heart – Children With Hair Loss.
Seeing sick and ailing children in hospitals has always torn at my heartstrings. While having actively supported St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital thru the years, I have always sought out ways to do more, and have recently discovered another way to help the children. And it costs nothing, really.
In recent days, some folks here have approached and asked me about my increasingly long hair. “What’s up with the ponytail, Jim?” Here is the inside scoop for everyone.
What began as more of a lark when the COVID shutdown occurred last spring, growing out a ponytail just for fun because I could not get to a barber anyway, continued afterward when restrictions eased just to see what it would do, aided by my lifelong disdain for barbers and costly haircuts in general.
I had always wanted to grow a ponytail just for fun and had made more than a few aborted attempts along the way, always grabbing the scissors when my hair reached five inches or so, not having the nerve to really go thru with it. But always in the back of my mind were the mental images of some of my heroes, all sporting ponytails (or “queues” as they were called in the early days) at one point or another in their lives – George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Willie Nelson, George Carlin, and others. Admittedly, some may have been wigs in colonial times, but still a simply smashing good look!
So, with a beginning boost from the COVID shutdown in spring, my personal “Ponytail Project” has now evolved into purposely growing my hair out with a reason.
I am supporting and joining in the efforts of a large (and growing) number of men who are growing their hair out to support the organization “Children With Hair Loss”, a non-profit organization that provides human hair replacements at No Cost to children and young adults facing medically-related hair loss due to Cancer treatments, Alopecia, Trichotillomania, Burns, etc. Beginning in the year 2,000 and helping children and young adults across the nation, Children With Hair Loss has assisted over 5,000 nationwide thru 2019.
A 2019 event sponsored by ‘The Longhairs’ organization I am participating with set a Guinness World Record, generating 339 pounds of hair donations and $50,000 in support of the Children With Hair Loss efforts. The next big donation event – “The Great Cut 2024” is scheduled for some time in 2024 (exact date to be determined later), at which time they are working to do even more and set another Guinness World Record. At that point, I will donate my hair to be part of it all.
So, that is why I am growing my hair out – to help the kids. Because the painful effects of the treatments these children have to endure are far more than physical, and deeper than merely cosmetic. Self-image is a very important thing when one is a youngster, teen, or young adult. Emotional scars are just as or more painful than the physical, with emotional damage perhaps everlasting.
If you would like to join with me in the cause and save a bundle of cash in barber and hair salon expenses over the next four years, I would be honored to grow along with you. There will be opportunities to donate and/or participate from anywhere in the world.
Donated hair must be at least 8” long, with the strongly preferred length 12” and longer. It can be grey or any color, dyed, or treated, but cannot be bleached. On average, human hair grows approximately ½” per month, so now is the time to start.
In the meantime and as time goes on, your support and encouragement are greatly appreciated while I simply Keep on Growing!
I will update with progress reports here from time to time as we go along and eagerly look forward to hearing from others who may be growing their hair out for the children, as well.
Right now, with the early head start last spring, my hair is already 9” long. With the kids in mind and along with the other men, I am shooting for a length of 24” to 30” by 2024. Please wish me luck and just call me “Hippie Jim” if you like.
Will you grow along with me to help the Children With Hair Loss efforts? It is for a very good cause and is yet another opportunity to help make a positive difference in someone’s life.
Thanks always for visiting and reading along! Very best wishes for a Happy & Healthy Holiday Season! Keep on Growing! – ‘Hippie’ Jim
If you enjoyed this piece, you may also like — “How To Be Mindfully Aware Of Positive Thoughts and Actions”
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“The Great Cut 2024” info → https://thegreatcut.us/
Children With Hair Loss → https://childrenwithhairloss.us/