Please join me in a fun event . . . no matter where you are!

It’s been a hard year, but the last few weeks have been especially hard. Losing Mom rocked my world in a bad way. People say you can find something positive in everything, but that’s crap. There is nothing good about losing my mom, especially at her young age, and especially the way we lost her. It just plain sucks.

Getting back into my regular routine has been a challenge. I’m just not there yet. I’m trying, but I’m not there. I’m taking care of my basic needs, and just trying to forgive myself of the rest. It’s the best I can do.

One thing I’ve decided to do, though, is organize an event in honor of my mom. I’d like to invite all of you to help me with this:

When my mom, Cindy, lost her hair due to chemotherapy, she was devastated. She had always taken great pride in her hair, so to lose it meant (to her) that she was losing part of her identity. It might seem like “just hair” to those who have it, but to those who have lost it, it’s much, much more. Luckily my mom was able afford to buy several wigs from a local wig shop. She LOVED them. She became very proud of her wigs, and you could see how confident she was in them.

Some women aren’t able to afford wigs after they lose their hair due to chemo. Pantene and the American Cancer Society have partnered to provide these women with free wigs through a program called Beautiful Lengths. So far their partnership has provided 24,000 real-hair wigs to women – allowing them to regain their confidence.

On May 29th, 2014, I will be donating my ponytail to Pantene and the ACS. This date is significant to me, as it would have been Mom’s 61st birthday. (Mom passed away on 2/1/14.) It takes 8-15 ponytails to create one wig. My hope is that I can find at least 7 other women to join me in this event. You don’t need to go anywhere special. You don’t need to join me in person. You can do this on your own, wherever you are. You can do it before 5/29 or after 5/29. Whatever. The instructions are simple, and are posted below. I am asking that you take a picture of yourself with your ponytail in hand and post it with the hashtag: #cindys61st

If I can get this event to go beyond my friends, that would be amazing. Please share this with anyone you think will participate. You can find the event on Facebook here as well.

Donation instructions:
1. Clean, shampoo, and/or condition hair, without any styling, hairspray, or additional hair products.
2. Gather hair at the nape of the neck.
3. Create a ponytail with an elastic band.
4. Ensure that the elastic band is just below where you want to cut your hair.
5. Measure the length of the ponytail from the elastic band to the tips, making sure it’s at least 8 inches long.
6. Place the ponytail, kept intact with the elastic band, in a zipper-lock bag and seal tightly.
7. Place the plastic bag with the ponytail in a padded or plastic envelope and send to:
Pantene Beautiful Lengths
Attn: 192-123
806 SE 18th Ave.
Grand Rapids, MN 55744

Note: Hair cannot be dyed, bleached or chemically treated. (HOWEVER, Locks for Love will take hair that has been dyed. You can participate through them as well!)

Additional instructions for Beautiful Lengths can be found online here.

If you are local to Harrisburg, PA, watch for additional information. We are looking to hold a “birthday party” for Mom at a local salon, during which folks can get their hair cut and enjoy some party food.

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