On taking the final step (or shave)

I have had this in the house for over a year, using it for regular shaving, which surprisingly, I have to do (neck and cheeks).

The other day, I don’t know what got into me, I took my shaving razor to my head. I have been shaving my head quite close for months, I have just not used anything but my Wahl, ‘Peanut’ hair trimmer to do so. I have avoided using anything with a blade since my skin loves to be nicked, and does so easily and frequently when I pass a razor over my skin. Even when I don’t actually nick it, it can open and bleed. Therefore, I have resorted to an electric shave.

Shaving my head has been one of the best things I have done, as I have mentioned before, perhaps one of the most liberating things I have ever chosen. I had feared, as most men do and yet don’t care to admit, hair loss. I had figured out when studying genetics in high school, that I was most probably safe. As it turned out, theories in the late sixties were off, well demonstrated on my pate.

I located a photo album for a friend the other day, to show her and her son photos of his possible exchange location in France that I have helped arrange. In it I saw myself at the age of forty-eight. I still had plenty of hair on the top, clearly losing it (in more than one way!), but still there.

At one point in this balding process, and being a long time hater of comb overs, I started cutting my hair really short, a style I wore for a long time, liberating me from the barber shop. As time went on it got shorter and shorter. Early last summer, I tried to shave it off with my electric trimmer and liked it.

As vain as we are, instead of being more self-conscious, I felt even less so, a serious surprise for me. I am thankful to all of the men who have preceded me by being courageous enough to let go of their follicular plumage and making being bald a possibility.

My biggest adjustment has been to the air. I cannot tell you how different it feels to have the air movement and feel the cool air on my head. At the beginning of the winter, I actually wondered if I would ever be able to go outside without a hat. As it happens, it was a slow adjustment, and I can actually do that.

Now that I have taken an actual razor to my head, thanks to a thirty-something student at Oakton I met while playing Santa, Joshua Rodriguez, I have the tools I need to actually shave my head with a razor (which is way faster and feels even better), without blood loss.

More to come…

About Richard Koerner

Sixty something, father, papi, educator, organizer, Francophile, traveler, amateur photographer, gardener, cyclist, kayaker, calligrapher, cinephile, reader, and overall renaissance type human being.
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