When Molly Erdman got pregnant with her first child, she expected a lot of unexpected symptoms – but not going completely bald.
What started as an itchy scalp as she entered her second trimester quickly became a bald spot and the hair just kept falling out.
“With about a month to go, my hair had reached a point that my husband described as Gollum-esque,” Molly tells the Huffington Post. “This would seem pretty cruel if he weren't such a huge Lord of the Rings fan and if it weren't so accurate.
“My earlier plans for this last month had been to go out to dinner, hang out with friends, spend time at the pool – all those things that would be harder to do once the baby was here.
“But instead I spent that time as a hermit, not telling most of my friends and family what was happening.
“Even at home I kept my head covered at all times, going to bed every night with a bandana on.”
Molly had hypothyroidism, which can sometimes cause hair loss. She started medication, but experienced no hair regrowth, with her doctor telling her she would probably continue losing her locks until the baby was born.
When her baby’s due date came and went without any activity, Molly asked her husband to shave her head.
“It felt great,” she said. “I'd never looked weirder. It was such a relief. There was no shock about my appearance; I'd had so little hair left that I already knew what I would look like bald.
“There were no more sad, stringy strands, and no more trying to make hair come out from under my hat in a way that made it look normal. I was unapologetically bald, and I loved it.”
Unfortunately, Molly’s confidence didn’t last and by the next morning she was hiding her bare scalp under hats and scarves. But when her baby was born a week later, everything turned around.
“Within a few days, the first bursts of stubble appeared on my head,” she said. “More importantly, the instant my daughter was born I completely forgot that I was bald.
“My hair continued to grow back, and within about three months it was passably normal. Today I have a full head of hair.”