Tuesday, April 30, 2013



My mother's heart is so heavy this moment.

She was so excited to wear that wig to preschool for the first time,

yet nervous about what the reaction would be,

clinging to her Daddy's knees as he walked her inside.

I knew it would be a big deal,

yet I was hopeful and expectant that it would be a positive experience.


the teacher met me at the door with a straight face and an account of what happened.

The kids were all reacting, telling my baby she had fake hair.

To which my daughter denied,

because to her,

it's as real as hair can get.

The class came to a halt to discuss the elephant in the room,

and my daughter had to explain to a group of children

who know nothing about what it's like to be bald.

The class was then understanding,

but then it was playground time.

And a boy from another class had a few choice words.

My daughter watched as he was pulled aside by his teacher

and chastised.

Then the teacher told her that he was just jealous of her.

Jealous?  Really?

And she has no reason not to believe that,

as I hear her currently processing that comment.

I'm sorry, honey.  He wasn't jealous.

He was just mean.

He has sin in his heart like we all do.

Another classmate pulled off the wig accidentally.

Parents smiled and reacted as I walked up to the school.

As the teacher recounted the day's events,

my head was swirling and I didn't know what to say.

It was like everything went into slow motion.

My eyes brimmed with tears.

I don't know what to do.

I feel so alone.

And I'm trying my best, God.

I don't want to watch her get hurt.

I know she's fine, and it's me who is carrying the anxiety and pain of this moment.

But I honestly just want You to take it away.

Help me forgive stupid people.

May their words and reactions not be such a bother to me.

Give me Your strength, and help me through this emotional time

in our alopecia journey.

Let me rest in Your approval and Your justification alone,

and help my sweet daughter to do the same,

I pray.


Monday, April 29, 2013

a new era...

It's been quite a momentous week for us in the world of alopecia.

We've reached a new era.

For months now, my daughter has CONSTANTLY played dress-up, always adorning herself with these ratted-up Dollar Store hair extension pieces.  She would ask me to braid them and she'd literally spend hours styling them and playing with them.

Seriously, around the house, she was always wearing one of those things.  You could possibly call it borderline obsession.  :)  She has had so much fun pretending she had hair!

So it wasn't a huge surprise when she began asking me if she could wear those nasty hair pieces out of the house.   (to which I said no.  Call me a mean mommy, I don't care.)

But the bottom line was,

It was time.

You know, I wish there was a manual on "How to parent a little girl with alopecia."  I can honestly say this was never on my radar when I became a mama.  I never thought I'd face issues like when-to-buy-hair for my daughter's bald head!

And if I'm going to be completely honest with you all, it kind of makes me angry that I have to.

I've come to accept the bald.  So why can't we leave things the way they are??

But alas, there is no manual.  There are only other people's opinions and your own mama instinct.

And even though I personally was not ready for this new era,

for my daughter's sake,

I knew it was finally time.

So our first wig came in the mail this week.

This little gal was beside herself to have the long hair she so desperately wanted.

Um, who IS this child?

The first glance at herself in the bathroom mirror.

She couldn't stop laughing with excitement.  

Marc and I celebrated with her.

And shed a few tears together when she wasn't looking.

What a strange, surreal moment for us.

Happy to see her SO happy.

But emotional at this new phase in our journey with alopecia.

Not only do I have the task of learning how to do my black son's hair, but now I must also learn the ins and outs of WIGS!  (Had anyone told me this when I got married almost fourteen years ago, I would've thought you were crazy.)

Here's the low-down on the wig, in case any of you are wondering...

This wig is synthetic hair, (much, much cheaper than the human hair wigs) and it can be washed with water and special cleanser and conditioner made specifically for synthetic hair.  It can't take any heat like blow drying or curling iron, though.  I got this wig stand for it to "rest" on.  So weird.

I've gotta admit, I keep wondering, does it look real on her?  Do people think it's real?  But then Marc reminds me, "Amy, most people are not looking at our child and thinking she's wearing a WIG.  They're going to assume it's real from the get-go."

Maybe that's one reason this is so hard for me to process-- it's easy to answer questions when my child's head is bald.  Alopecia is just "out there."  It feels we're being more real and honest.  (which is the way I'm most comfortable rolling in life...)

But walking around town with my child wearing a wig?  I feel a little like we're in hiding.  In a weird way.  What happens on the day when Jameson yanks it off of her in public?

Of course, she doesn't care.  She's going up to store salespeople and anyone she can find to talk to and says, "I'm wearing a WIG!" and not one of them knows quite how to react to that statement.  (Honestly, I wouldn't either!  Who even has categories for that?!)

So I guess I'm saying things feel a bit backwards right now.  She's covered up with a wig, yet still being open about her baldness.  (which is GREAT and I don't want it to ever be a shameful or secretive thing!)

I just don't know how to handle it all just yet.

Neither does anyone else.

Navigating unchartered territory.

But while I'm trying to emotionally process this huge change, SHE is in heaven wanting to wear this thing non-STOP!   This was the style she wanted on this particular day.  Sweet, isn't it?  I can't believe I skipped the last three years of doing a single hair-do, and now I've suddenly got to throw myself into it.

She says the wig feels "cozy" and does not itch or hurt.   But she's not used to having hair in her face, or having to think about keeping it out of her food, though, so she's learning some of the drawbacks to hair, too.

Around the house this week, she is spending most of her hours making up for lost time.  :)  She just can't put enough clips and bows in the thing.  

Today she wanted a big ponytail and two clips to wear out.

She loved it.

So here we are... a new era of alopecia.

Exciting, scary, unknown.

But one thing is for sure:

I love this gal.

AND this one, too.
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Friday, April 26, 2013


I can't believe the end of the semester is already winding down!

Last night was our final RUF large-group meeting of the Spring 2013 semester and it's now tradition that the last RUF of each semester is "Senior Night."

The way it works is that each of our seniors shares a testimony to the group,
telling us what God has taught them in their time at college and at RUF,
passing down their wisdom to the underclassmen,
and then they pick their favorite "RUF" hymn for all of us to sing together.

It's also become our tradition to end each Senior Night singing the hymn "On Jordan's Stormy Banks" together.  Very emotional for our group.

Senior Night is always bitter-sweet:

It's wonderful to see these students grow in grace and share what they have learned,

but oh, it's SOO sad to say goodbye and send them off to serve Jesus all around the world in many different capacities and careers.

We had a great group of seniors this year, and we will miss them so much.

But now it's time for the younger generations to catch the vision of RUF
and take ownership of the ministry!

Here are a few more pics from last night you might enjoy:

Marc gave a brief, final sermon from the series, "Redemption in a Rated R World" through the book of Judges and Ruth.  In it was much encouragement and a particular charge to our seniors.

And what's there not to like about this???

Three of our senior gals who have blessed both us and our group.

Congratulations to our 2013 Seniors!  We love you guys!
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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

beyond blessed...

Too quickly do I fall into the trap of complaining.

Sure, I'd loooove to get some more sleep at night.
I would give anything to have one room in my house picked up and clean.
It would be a dream to have children that um, well, obey....
Life with a baby is hard, people!  Young children are hard to stay home with!

But when I think back to how this precious little baby so quickly fell into our arms and our lives, I am so amazed.

And for a moment, my complaining will cease.

We are beyond blessed.

So here's a few things I'm grateful for this day:

I love watching Daddy have a son.
(thank you, cousin Laura, for the matching South Carolina visor!)

It's wonderful watching him with Caroline, too.

It's just different with a boy.

Meet our RUF student, Mary.  She's a VOLUNTEER 4-hours-a-week nanny for us and she's wonderful.

I don't know how I could get through my week without her amazing help this past semester.  My kids love her, too.

She keeps Jameson while I take Caroline to her swim lessons each week.
I'm grateful for this time alone with my daughter.
While we're gone,
She does my laundry.
She cooks our dinner.
Caroline and I come home to folded laundry and a homecooked meal.  (ahhh, could there be anything better?)
As we all enjoy dinner together, Mary ministers to my sweet daughter and answers all of her burning questions.

We are beyond blessed to have her help.  (Thank you, Mary!)

In other news, did you know that the name "Jameson" means "son of Jacob," and "Jacob" means "heel-grabber"?

Well, Jameson is proudly living up to the name "grabber."

Those little hands and fingers want to grasp everything they can.

I am still in awe that WE get to be his parents.  Look at my boys!

Baby J laughs with delight when his Daddy comes home from work.  (even at 5 months!)

We are beyond blessed.
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Monday, April 15, 2013

a thousand words...

If a picture is worth a thousand words...

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Sunday, April 14, 2013


Well, here we are at 5 months, so we're trying a little rice cereal each day.

Just trying to get used to the foreign contraption otherwise known as the spoon.

But this little guy's not so interested in taking it sometimes.

Hmmm, nope.

Well, maybe we'll just gobble HIM up instead.

More?  More?

Nah.  At least not today.

Just be patient with me and keep trying, guys.

I'll decide when it's time to pig out.
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