Move Past Your Phobia Confront Your Fear
What phobias do you have? I have the regular, “I don’t like spiders and snakes,” most insects, dirty bathrooms and…wait for it… hair.
Yeah, I have a phobia of hair.
I know this might sound strange coming from someone that has very long hair and is married to a rather hirsute Frenchman. Robert’s facial hair grows back faster than Homer Simpson. It’s the last second in this clip that is the most important.
My husband is the kind of guy that looks like he needs to shave right after he has just shaved.
A continuous five o’clock shadow.
It was partially this bad boy look that attracted me to him in the first place.
The reality is I don’t like hair anywhere except for on the head of the person it belongs to, including my own.
I think this is partially a hereditary fear passed down from my Mom but I also believe a distaste for loose hair, especially wet hair in the bathroom is something everyone can agree is gross.
Like that disgusting stray hair stuck really high up in the hotel shower. Every effort is made to remove it without touching it. Splashing water on it to get it to go down the drain. Jumping to avoid it on its journey to the drain.
“That thing isn’t touching me!”
I mean just how “clean” am I getting when the shower is obviously filthy? (This may relate back to my phobia of dirty bathrooms.)
How about when you’re at the local pool and the damp, cold floor is covered with loose, wet strands of hair all sticking to your feet like hungry seaweed? Ugh. Probably one of the top reasons I despise swimming in pools. I can’t take the locker rooms.
Let’s not even get into the fact that 90% of the time I’m covered in pug hair.
This is the scary story of the hair sweater.
I’m giving you fair warning that it is not a story for those with weak stomachs or germaphobes.
This is the culprit…the rainbow striped sweater.
It looks innocent enough right?
I’d been looking for a striped rainbow sweater for ages and this ticked all the boxes apart from one small detail…it had quite a bit of hair on it.
Normally when I thrift I simply walk right past something that makes me want to hurl. Thrifting isn’t for wimps. The things you can find in pockets alone can fill your nightmares for years.
I quickly moved past the sweater only to return about five minutes later convincing myself it’d be fine if I washed it.
Well, I washed it.
The plan was great but failed miserably. I didn’t realize that the hair seemed to have become one with the sweater.
And not just one type of hair…oh no! There was long blond straight hairs, thick back curly hair, medium length brown hairs. It was hairmageddon!
I wasn’t ready to throw in the t
owel sweater yet though.
This wasn’t going to be a waste of money. I would beat this damn sweater!
Touching hair that isn’t attached to someone’s head is akin to touching a live snake for me. I had to force myself past my phobia and painstakingly pull out the damp, clingy hairs one by one, all the while trying not to gag.
I’m not gonna lie…it was gross!
In my effort to understand where all the hair came from I convinced myself that everyone who had ever tried on the sweater had left remnants of their DNA which had merged with the sweater and created the perfect environment to grow hair. The first ever hair growing sweater! My imagination can run wild when given the opportunity.
Maybe someone wiped up the floor of a hair salon with it? How else could one account for all that revolting hair???
After about thirty minutes of hair pulling (literally) I was delighted to see the outside of the sweater was now a hair free zone.
Whew! I was ready to throw it into the dryer, the second step I take to ensure that no bed bugs come into my house. For that, I needed to turn the sweater inside out. I cannot express the utter dismay and disbelief in my heart when I turned the piece inside out and it was COVERED in more hair!!!
How did the hair get inside the sweater?
Stephen King couldn’t even imagine this abomination.
At this point I had to take a break.
A woman can only stand so much of facing her fears. I took the pug for a walk and cleared my mind. This allowed me to mentally prepare myself for the remaining shaggy carpet of hair that awaited me.
I returned to the task at hand and once again began freeing the sweater of its hair passengers individually.
This took much longer than I anticipated and was a gruelling test of my patience. I powered through though. I refused to be undone by this freak hair sweater.
You may be thinking I’m a tad stubborn.
I think my husband would agree.
It took far too much time and effort but look Ma! I’ve got my sweater!
Convincing myself to wear it even after I’d extensively cleaned it was another thing. Just the idea of putting it over my head freaked me out a bit but I pushed past my revulsion of hair and wore it. Yes, I made sure to wear a shirt underneath but it is all about baby steps people.
Now that there is a story to go along with the sweater I cherish it even more.
Ha! Who’s the freak now?
Have you ever confronted any of your phobias?