My mum first noticed the little spots in my head when I was about four years old. We went and saw a dermatologist and tried different treatments, but nothing really made that much difference, and back then it wasn’t really that much of a big deal.
In year six, big patches of my hair started to come out – it was ok at first – me and my friends would have a bit of a joke about it, but in year seven when I started high school things got worse. It got to the point where I had more patches than hair and we had to make the tough decision to shave it off.
I went through a pretty tough time at school.
Not everyone knew why I had no hair and I felt like I was the only kid with the problem. But Mum got in touch with Greg O’Rouke and the Alopecia Support Group and I got to go on my first camp. Getting to meet other kids with the same issue, to hang out with guys like Carlo Napolitano made so much difference to how I felt. I wasn’t alone and having no hair didn’t make any difference to who I was.
Being involved in sport makes a big difference to how I feel about myself. Being able to compete and be on a team with mates who don’t care if I have hair or not is important. Finding a team that accepts you for your ability and not your appearance makes all the difference.
My hair grew back last year, but pretty much straight away it started to come out again. I’ve shaved my head again – its easier and I’m in charge of it. I was a bit nervous rocking in to my first training bald, but a few head rubs from the team later – no one cared – We just got on with training.
Thomas is a recipient of the AAAF sponsorship program. If you would like to receive financial support for your dreams and hobbies, please visit our web page to apply.