My name is Siarrah; I’m 13 years old, 14 next week. I am a proud recipient of the AAAF sponsorship program and I would like to share my Alopecia story.
My rollercoaster started when I was 2 years of age. Obviously, I was too young to understand the journey I was about to take but I was lucky to have a family who held my hand and travelled my journey with me.
I was living in Bargara Qld at the age of 2 all my hair disappeared. The next 12 months was a journey on its own trying to work out why my hair fell out. Once I was diagnosed with Alopecia the awareness and acceptance journey started. Mum contacted the local paper who published an article on “Alopecia Awareness” and this was the start of my acceptance towards my condition. My story was always about being Bald and Beautiful, I was well known not only for my hair loss but my beautiful smile. At the age of 6 we moved to Yeppoon, mum organised a Crazy Hat Day at my new school to create Alopecia awareness, this also helped being accepted in a new school.
As I grew older I did become more self-conscious of my condition, I envied my friends who had beautiful long healthy hair and started wondering why I had Alopecia. Mum and I worked on acceptance and taught me the causes of the condition which helped with acceptance. Unfortunately, around 8 years of age, I was diagnosed with Mutism Anxiety, I was becoming withdrawn and found myself very comfortable staying quiet, staying in the back when everyone was moving forward. When the doctor suggested medication to help with my anxieties my mother thought it was best to change my lifestyle not to medicate it.
This is when my new lifestyle journey started. My life was not just about acceptance but living with Alopecia and embracing the condition. I was enrolled in swimming to create strength and fitness, Dance to build self-confidence, then netball to become part of group sports. This has taught me to put myself out front, I might not have hair but I still have voice and now at the age of 13/14 with the support of AAAF I am ready to create awareness again. I am still one of the quiet ones in my friendship group, I am proud of who I am. I intend on wearing the AAAF logo with pride and will have a voice when asked about my condition.
Alopecia is part of who I am and thanks to the support of the AAAF Sponsorship program I will be participating in a number of different carnivals in Qld including the Qld State Netball titles. I am also able to participate in a training program which is based on strength and conditioning.
I look forward to sharing my journey with you all.
For more information about the AAAF Sponsorship Program, visit our website at https://aaaf.org.au/sponsorship-program/