On this very day, I woke up after a long exhausting week of designs for clients. I just needed to oversleep a little over the weekend to recharge. I needed some well-deserved rest!
After brushing my teeth, taking a long hot shower and getting dressed, I glanced in the mirror and was shocked. A striking reality. I was losing hair, lots of hair. To the point I was going bald. Since my younger years I always loved a change of hairdo and was wearing extensions, fancy wigs or just my natural hair. No major hair issues. But on this day, suddenly I was confronted with a reality that something was not right.
You start wondering the obvious, is it Cancer, Alopecia, stress? What in God’s name was going on!
And you wonder…
You wonder what life would be for those Cancer patients that are going through Chemotherapy in the hope for a cure. And those men, women and even children that had the stroke of luck to have Alopecia maybe at a very young age and are dealing with the cruelty of this world, that is pointing fingers at them like… “Ha ha! You don’t have hair!”
How does that feel?
That you’re losing your “crown”, since our granny and mommy always told us that our hair is our crown…
And just like that as I was staring at myself in the bathroom mirror.
How to deal with the loss?
That made me think of a guest bathroom makeover that I did for a client. Nothing fancy, just a quick revamp to coordinate with the whole house design. And I wondered, how would someone feel having a beautifully designed bathroom, big or small?
You see… most of us cry, scream and let out our frustrations in the bathroom, to later wash the tears off, put on some makeup and a “fake” smile to face the world.
Also, bathrooms are now more important than ever, in order to keep our hygiene, the best we can to avoid the Covid virus spread.
When designing this guest bathroom in this condo, the client wanted a drastic change, but keeping the sink and the toilet. I thought, let us go dramatic. Change the wall colors to a dark grey, with a lighter tone to accentuate the crown moldings. I could go for a dark color in such a tiny space, since the window was letting sufficient light in. But for the light at night, an open wired industrial ceiling lamp was the perfect choice to install together with a stylish big round “Edison” bulb. On the opposite wall towards the sink, I chose these dramatic Portugal tiles with black, white and light greyish tones to compliment the flow of the grey painted walls which stands out perfectly with the actual square basin, faucet and wooden base. We decided to keep the wooden base to bring a balance to the whole.
After the handymen installed all the tiles and finalized the painting, I came in for the final details like a window roller blind for privacy, the towels displaying an inspiring message, a big trendy round industrial mirror with leather hanging cord among others. This mirror was the perfect size for that peculiar artistic wall, not too big but enough to reflect the light during the day and night. Some matching soap dispensers were used displaying the soap and some faux flowers accompanied by a funny Mr. Grasshopper to keep the visitors company while handling their business.
I shopped around the house and found this matching trash can that suits perfectly with the rest of the accessories and last but not least an old rose high textured bathroom carpet.
Oh! I almost forgot… The wall facing the door was too sterile, so I decided to add some pop of color and interest to the eye with these identical abstract paintings.
Now I am done!
A dramatic and daring transformation where I went bold with dark colors in a small space. It surely made a difference to dare to face the odds.
The same goes with us. We rather shrink ourselves instead of facing our realities and look for practical solutions. In my case looking back, I decided after the loss of both my parents in less than a year apart, my other belated friends that departed this world shortly afterwards due to Cancer, to shave off all my hair to honor them in my two episodes of my TV series, to tackle the hair loss situation and raise awareness thereof.
But now that this hair loss situation actually presented itself, I decided to shave off all my remaining hair again, now for a different cause and just go living on the beauty of continuing wearing my extensions and wigs or even sometimes go bold and bald for a change.
Because at the end of the day, you have to be happy with your own self, whether it is bald, wearing wigs or natural hair. It is all up to you!
Now my question to you is… What do you see in the mirror?
Nadin Benito is a well-known International Interior Designer at Welcome Home Designs, based on the beautiful island of Curacao where she has more than 20 years of design experience under her belt, as well as being a producer of her own TV series. During the illness and passing of both of her parents in less than 1 year apart, but also 3 of her close friends, Nadin founded Welcome Home Foundation - Curacao which is dedicated in designing Pro Bono for a good cause, namely for Cancer patients and Cancer survivors, who went through drastic life changes, by designing an area in their home/ location completely for free including all decorative items, to give them hope and help them gather much needed strength.
“As an Interior Designer, I had the opportunity to experience the importance of creating beautiful places at several Cancer patients’ and survivor’s homes, in order to give them hope and also to contribute to their prompt recovery after all the chemotherapy and exhaust. By experiencing the passing of my own parents, 3 close friends and other close family members due to Cancer, it gave me the ultimate push to continue with this noble work... Designing for a good cause… An area where the Cancer patients feel welcome and at peace. Cancer does not take a break. But with this noble cause, we can ensure that hope for these patients and survivors won't either…”
Visit Nadin at www.welcomehomefoundationcuracao.com.