Summer of New Haven, CT

Shiny, bold and unapologetic it stared at me like a magical eye as I examined it in the mirror. It was the size and shape of a new quarter and seemed to glow like a full moon. I recoiled as I realized that my thick and unruly mane of curls now featured a very smooth and slick bald patch. My doctor called it alopecia areata, ordered a cortisone injection and sent me on my way. I was too embarrassed to admit that my hair loss was rooted in abusive relationships, self-loathing and negative habits that punctuated the beginning and end of every day. My new magical moon patch revealed a silent truth and convinced me that I could no longer put my self or my needs at the bottom of another to-do list. I was twenty-two and desperate to find a sense of self-worth. I didn’t find so much love or warmth as a child and spent many years defining my life by those circumstances. Slowly, I learned that living has to happen in the present tense and that I would attract the love I wanted by finding it in myself first. I worked hard to become a Kindergarten teacher and a nurturer by profession in order to create the environment I know children deserve. That’s why I love myself – for being resilient and for being able to recognize the joy of life despite a challenging start. I vow to always inspire that in others.

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About this author

Mariela Rosario,

I'm a raging opinionista and I love to share my ramblings on everything from pop culture to food to stuff that makes me laugh & cry! I've worked in all types of media (TV, film, print) and was previously the online editor at Latina magazine before joining Mamás Latinas. On most nights you can find me working my way through my library of cookbooks or playing with my puppy Lola (my only child so far). I have a wonderful hubby who shares my passion for any and all kinds of travel. Together, we've formed a semi-professional wine drinking team.

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