Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.

That cool quote in the title was by the philosophical Robin Sharma. We tend to get so stuck in routine stuff and trying to fit in that we miss out on exhilarating experiences that await us outside the rules that we live within. Did that even make sense to you? It just sounded like some equally philosophical (and long winding) statement and not even as profound as the stuff our friend Robin comes up with, right! But you know what? The magic each of us is looking for does exist. The only catch is that we need to be willing to change. To move beyond the usual, the ordinary and be prepared to take a big, bold step –heck even a leap— to find it.

My big ‘magic’ moment happened way back in 2010. It was Feburary – just a month before my 12th standard board exams were about to begin. I should have been studying, but keeping with typical student behavious,I was doing a lot of other things instead of studying. But mostly, I was toying around with the idea of shaving my shoulder length curly hair and go bald.

Putting it down in words, that statement sounds so innocent. But in reality it was quite the controversy. Firstly, which girl in her right mind wants to have no hair? Then, no one took it seriously, mostly brushing it off as a passing whim. But oh, I was serious about it. The main deterrents to shaving bald were my own fears. To really understand this, you need to know that my parents are pretty cool- and have developed the ability to cope with anything I throw their way – decisions to go bald included. Besides, I really think they were onboard with the ‘passing whim’ theory.

So about my fears:

My main one was ‘I’ve got a round face, and will look fat’. That really troubled me because it brought home the reality that no matter how much we’d like to pretend otherwise, we’re all truly vain inside. Then there were other concerns about being ridiculed and not being able to wear things like kurtas (Yup – originating from the same vain spot). But the fat face thing really bothered me. Untill one day I woke up and realised that my desire to shave bald was actually greater than my fears of looking horrible.  So I took the plunge.

My dad took me to this local barber for a more authentic experience (yup, my dad is cool that way). The poor barber was completely thrown off – women rarely came to him for a cut, let alone ask for a bald head. But after a while he realised that we were serious. I got the whole package – the shave and the massage. And it was brilliant.

The first time I looked at the bald me- it was pure magic! It felt so liberating! For the first time I realised how much women depended on their hair – and for the first time I didn’t care one hoot about how I looked. Shaving the hair from my scalp was like breaking free from some invisible rules that I didn’t even know I was living within.  That one bold step felt like the beginning of a whole new lifetime for me.

And the best part – The stares that come with being a bald girl – that’s what stardom feels like!


The reluctant writer


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