If you type Stef Hodgson into Google Images, it’ll come up with a selfie of me looking like a crazy person. During my first ever photoshoot for a news article, the photographer asked me to hold his camera while he set up some equipment. You can guess what this sweet summer child did. I probably should’ve known that the alliteration, ‘seventeen-year-old Stefanie snaps a selfie’ was too good an opportunity to pass up on. Sigh.
When I got Alopecia at age six, I shook my tiny fist at the sky and asked, ‘why me?’ Six years later I had no hair left on my head and still no answer to that question. At the time it felt like the worst thing that could ever happen to me, but reflecting on my journey, Alopecia has been one of the most heartbreaking and empowering experiences of my life.
Sharing my story has taken me from one bucket list item to the other and I’ve crossed off being on radio, TV, in newspapers, magazines and on many prominent social media sites. It’s been a wild ride. My favourite part of the work that I do is being able to help people embrace their own kind of beautiful. The kind of beautiful which has stretch marks, acne and always seems to be too fat or too thin. The kind of beautiful which is real.
Being able to give back to the AAAF in my capacity as a Support Ambassador has been amazing because I still remember my first event with them. Being 14 and bald, I’d always felt like a bit of a freak… until I walked into a room filled with other egg heads like me. Then I felt like I belonged to a community. I guess that’s what I hope ‘love, Alopecia’ becomes – a community of people sharing stories and empowering each other to be the best version of themselves possible.
One day, bald will be the new black, but until then, feel free to shoot me a message if you want to chat about anything. firstname.lastname@example.org
Most beautiful place you’ve ever been? There is this spot in Airey’s Inlet where you can stand on the peak of the headland. The view is incomparable. To the left, the beautiful beaches are sprawled at the feet of the sandstone cliffs. When I was growing up we use to go swimming there no matter the season. I would sometimes come out almost as blue as the water, but always with a delighted smile on my face. To the right, the iconic white lighthouse juts into the sky. It’s beautiful and peaceful. I love it.
Favourite childhood book/author? My favourite childhood author is Shirley Temple. I love her stories because they are always filled with magic and wonder, whether it be in the vivid characters or the incredible drawings. We still have a few of them on our bookshelf and I hope that one day I’ll be able to read them to my children.
Cat person or dog person? I’m a crazy cat lady in the making
If you had to choose a fictional world to live in, which would you choose? How could you not choose the Harry Potter universe??
Early riser or night owl? As much as I’d love to be one of those ‘seize the day! Let’s get up at the crack of dawn’ kind of people, I’m usually a zombie until at least 10am.
First concert you ever attended? Tay Tay Swift’s Red tour
If you could have dinner with three famous people, living or dead, who would it be?
Plato: We’d discuss the meaning of life over cheap red wine and then I’d go and introduce him to the microwave. I feel like it would be very entertaining to show someone from about 400BC modern-day technology.
Emma Watson: I’m deeply inspired by the work that she does and there are so many things I would love to ask her.
Brene Brown: I worship at the altar of her books on positive psychology. She’s hilarious and incredibly intelligent. I’ve no doubt she’d be telling Plato ‘knock, knock’ jokes by the end of the night.
I’m George and I am an official internet dweller and paperwork manager for the Australia Alopecia Areata Foundation Inc. I have degrees in Film and Television and Business and five years’ experience as a Support Ambassador, which I put to work improving the lives of people with alopecia through awareness and information. In my former life as a documentary producer, I learnt all about the power of stories to empower, inform, and bring change. That’s what I hope to bring to Love, Alopecia.
I have extensive alopecia street cred, having been shiny since 1998 and experienced alopecia in almost all its’ forms. Currently I am experiencing the complicated joys of universalis. My interests include nerdery of all forms, consuming too much coffee and growing the food that I cook. I aim to live by a combination of “Be the person you needed when you were younger” and “This too shall pass”. I own a dachshund who thinks she’s a cat and am owned by a cat who thinks she’s a queen.
I love talking to other bloggers, alopecian or otherwise, and love collaborating to bring good things to the world. Drop me a line at email@example.com
The Zombie Apocalypse has happened, which 5 celebrities would you want on your team? Bear Grylls (for obvious reasons), Jackie Chan (again, obvious, plus he just seems lovely), Harrison Ford (Carpenter, helicopter, all around good guy), Lucy Lawless (I just trust her), Natalie Portman (neuroscientists are so often overlooked in the apocalypse).
If you could have any super power, what would it be? Super healing. It’s essentially invulnerability but makes for a much more interesting emotional journey. I mentioned I was once a film student, didn’t I?
What’s your favourite food? How could you ask me something like this? Do you ask parents to pick a favourite child? Jeez. How could I choose between these great wonders of the world? I love all food. If any food out there is feeling unloved or unappreciated, please know that you will always have a place in my heart (and in my stomach).
Do you prefer summer or winter? Between the two? Winter. You can put on extra scarves and jumpers if you’re cold; if you’re too hot you just sweat. But if it were up to me, the year would only ever have Autumn and Spring.
If you had real hair for a day, what would you do first? Definitely complain.
If you were cast in a Disney movie, what character would you play? Madame Adelaide Bonfamille, former opera diva who leaves her entire fortune to her cats. Aristocats is my future.
Love, Alopecia is always on the lookout for new stories and perspectives to share about Alopecia or by members of our Alopecian family. We’d love to hear from you!
If you have a story you’d like to share or an article just bursting to be written, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org