All too often we complain about our hair; I for one was having a total hissy fit just this morning about mine. However, imagine not having any hair on your head at all. Could you even comprehend what that would be like?
Gianessa Wride, a 7-year-old girl from Utah knows exactly how this feels.
Read below to find out more.
Earlier this year, young Gianessa was diagnosed with alopecia which is a rare autoimmune disorder that causes the person who has it to lose some or all of their hair.
The disorder (alopecia) has no known cure or effective medications for treatment. According to Gianessa's mother, pill steroids can be taken to help hair re-growth, however, this is not a solution since once the sufferer (of alopecia) stops taking the meds, the hair will just fall out again.
Gianessa's mom Daniella had the following to tell CBS News: "On January 1st, Gianessa had taken a shower. After her shower, I was helping her brush her hair. Her hair was down to the middle of her back. I noticed that a lot of hair was coming out in the hairbrush and so I began looking around her head. I found a bald patch on the back of her head the size of a quarter. I also noticed that around her temples it was beginning to thin. We let her go to bed without telling her what was going on. I didn't want to scare her. My husband and I called her pediatrician the next day and made her an appointment."
The family pediatrician was only able to deliver an uncertain diagnosis and recommended that the child visit a dermatologist in order to obtain a 100% verdict of alopecia.
"It took a total of 20 days," Wride told CBS News. "I tried to explain it to her on a 7-year-old level, but tell her the exact truth. You can't beat around the bush with kids. And instilling false hope, I think, it's kind of cruel in its own way. So we just let her know that her hair was falling out and it probably wasn't going to grow back. And we also tried to let her know that she's still herself. She just doesn't have any hair. She can still emphasize her personality through fashion choices. She can still do art and dance and do karate."
Only a few short months later, Gianessa's parents had another hill to climb; her (Gianessa's) school was planning on having a 'crazy hair day'.
"I was really nervous when I found out that it [crazy hair day] was coming up," Daniella told CBS News.
Daniella goes on to say: "But I didn't want her to feel like an outcast or that she wasn't like the other kids, so I wanted to come up with something fun for her. I went to the Walmart craft section trying to see what I could find and put together for her. I came across these scrapbook sticker jewels. They just fit her personality. She's so vibrant and full of life and she loves everything sparkly."
According to abc7new.com, Daniella reportedly said that Gianessa chose for herself which of the sticker jewels she wanted on her head.
About her fellow school learner's reaction upon seeing her crazy hair day design, Gianessa said, "When I walked in, everyone was crowding me about the jewels."
Unexpected to the family, Gianessa won the school's crazy hair day competition with her funky and fabulous jeweled design!
The internet and social media went totally viral for Gianessa's look that day, with numerous positive messages pouring in for the little girl.
"I never in my wildest dreams expected for such a little girl to have such a positive influence on the world today," Daniella told CBS News of the unexpected global reaction. "Truly I cannot even begin to tell you how many times tears have come to my eyes just knowing that so many people are finding strength and courage in Gianessa's story. I hope it continues and can provide light and love to all those that see it."
"You have two choices: You can either be sad about it and miserable or you can have fun and enjoy it," Wride told sources. "You have to teach your kids life isn't fair all the time. You have to be able to adapt and change."
"Whatever you're going through even if it's tough, if you have alopecia, you can still be confident and be yourself. And bald is beautiful," Daniella said.
According to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, 6.8 million people in the U.S. live with this disorder. It affects people of all ages, and both sexes.