Tibetan Book of Balding

Tibetan Book of Balding

George CostanzaWhen you start to go bald, you face yourself squarely. You didn’t cause it, you didn’t earn it. It is not retribution or karma. It is simply destiny rising up in front of you. You can try to hide it with implants or fine woven rugs of hair, but you cannot escape it. It’s like an early death. Except that it’s only a loss of hair.

But it was, in my case, good practice in getting used to the concept of mortality. Baldness. Mortality. They both are final, non-judgmental, and jam-packed with unavoidable destiny. If you can learn to accept baldness and get on with your life, you can probably learn to accept death. It’s coming; that’s a no-brainer. Why worry about it? Hey, once you’ve gone through the grieving stages of losing your hair, you’ve got all the practice you need in dealing with the grim reaper. He carries a scythe, right? First he shorns you of your hair, later he comes back for the rest. Relax, already.

Reminds me of the guy who was afraid of relationships and commitment. Someone suggested he start with a pet. But even the idea of caring for a goldfish was more than he could take on. So he started with a houseplant. Got used to routine plant care, moved on to fish, than reptiles, then mammals, finally fellow humans. We should get used to mortality in baby steps, too. Include and accept all the little ‘passings’ that are constantly presented to us. Then when the ‘big one’ comes, you’ve got some skills to deal with it.

Of course, check in with me when my time comes. See if I’m so gosh darn sanguine about it.

(and even though ‘shorn’ is the past participle of ‘shear’, it just somehow sounded right in the sentence above. So sue me. You can’t shear me, that’s already taken care of.)

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