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Introduction of Legislation to End School Pushout in Washington, US

Source: Barcroft Media / Getty

It’s no secret that Representative Ayanna Pressley is a brave woman.

In 2018, Pressley ran against and defeated Massachusetts Rep. Mike Capuano, a 20-year incumbent, becoming the first Black congresswoman to represent the state.

She then called for the impeachment of President Trump.

And, let’s not forget how she defended herself when the president tweeted that she and the rest of The Squad should go back to where they came from.

But for Pressley, revealing that she has alopecia areata is likely one of the hardest things she’s done. In an exclusive video for The Root, the freshman Democrat told the world that she has the autoimmune disease that causes hair loss.

Alopecia affects approximately 6.8 million people in the United States and disproportionately affects Black women.

READ ALSO: Five Things Black Women Need To Know About Alopecia

Pressley discovered she had the disease last year when she was getting her hair re-twisted and was told that she had some bald patches. She found herself waking up each morning to “sinkfuls of hair.” Pressley thought that following the traditional “Black hair routines” would stop her hair loss.

“Every night, I was employing all the tools that I had been schooled and trained in throughout my life as a Black woman because I thought that I could stop this. I wrapped my hair. I wore a bonnet. I slept on a silk pillowcase,” Pressley added.

Yet, Pressley continued losing hair. The hair loss got so bad that every morning, she dreaded looking at her reflection in the mirror, “a person who increasingly felt like a stranger.”

Then, it happened. December 2019, the day before the House voted to impeach Trump, Pressley’s hair had fallen entirely out. “I was completely bald,” she revealed.

“I was completely bald.”

But, Pressley didn’t have time to morn over what “felt like the loss of a limb.” Within hours, she reported to the House Chamber to cast her vote in support of the articles of impeachment.

“…I exited the floor as soon as I could, and I hid in a bathroom stall,” an emotional Pressley recalled. “I felt naked, exposed, vulnerable. I felt embarrassed. I felt ashamed. I felt betrayed.”

But through it all, she’s learning to deal with it in hopes of fostering a community with those who share similar hair loss stories.

“I’m making progress every day. And that’s why I’m doing this today.”

On Twitter, Pressley wrote, “Today, I am sharing my #hairloss journey to create space and to create a community for those of us who have had complicated relationships with our hair. This was not easy, but vulnerability rarely is.”

“This was not easy, but vulnerability rarely is.”

The Twitter community showed their love for Pressley’s bravery:

Rep. Ayanna Pressley Reveals Her Bald Head For The First Time And That She Has Alopecia In A Powerful Video  was originally published on hellobeautiful.com

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