Trend or Trail?
My facial hair came in during my late teen years, and I never wanted to let it go. It was a sign that Momma, I made it! No more baby-face, no more guessing the extent of my boy-dom. I. WAS. A. MAN. I loved the enhanced ruggedness, toughness, and smooth finish that my facial hair gave me. Looking back at it, I really didn't even have that much, but you couldn't tell me anything. NO-SHAVE NOVEMBER?! Oh, this is no problem. As a matter of fact, telling me NOT to shave was an honor. It was a trend 100% worth following the crowd for.
Years go by, life gets more serious, and grooming became more regular. Getting a haircut became more difficult due to budget, time, and and other things. I learned how to line and trim my beard on my own. I was getting good at it. I no longer cared about No Shave November. My facial hair was once was a claim-to-fame for my manhood. It the became an issue and burden that resurfaced faithfully (roughly every 2-3 weeks). MY FACIAL HAIR WAS STRESSFUL! I always wanted to cut it, trim it, and keep my face clean.
November is Men's Health Awareness Month. In June, we celebrate Men's Health Month. November's Men's Health Awareness Month brings global awareness to men's health concerns. Men all over the world are encouraged to participate in fundraising efforts for men's health. These include No Shave November and Movemeber.
June's Men's Health Month is nationally-recognized and celebrated mainly in the United States. This month encourages men to take action in their health by getting screened, eating healthy, exercising, and more. Two different months; two different opportunities to bring men's health concerns to the table. It wasn't until recently when doing research on November's Men's Health Awareness Month that I found out that movements like No Shave November and Movember carry a meaning much bigger than me.
Men's Health Awarenss Month. Is not a trend, but it is is A trailblazing movement that brings awareness to cancers that affect men the most.
No Shave November
No Shave November became a national movement in 2009 after Matthew Hill of Chicago passed of colorectal cancer in 2007. His family honored him by reinventing the already created No Shave November campaign and turning it into a nationwide fundraiser and effort to bring awareness to issues concerning men & their families, mainly cancer. Men can participate by letting their facial hair grow out all November long to support men's health https://no-shave.org/.
Movember (pronounced 'Mo-vember') is a global movement that brings awareness to prostate cancer and mental health concerns men face. In Australia, a 'Mo' is short for moustache. It began in 2003 by 2 Australian mates who wanted to bring moustaches back as a fashion statement to raise money. Awareness of this movment starting spreading to neighnoring countries and eventually to the US too! Men can participate by letting their moustaches grow out all November long to support men's health https://us.movember.com/.
In spite of chemotherapy's ability to rapidly kill cancer cells, an unfortunate outcome of all forms of cancer is hair loss. This is true for both men and women.
The Top 4 Cancers that affect men are:
1. Prostate Cancer
2. Lung Cancer
3. Colorectal Cancer
4. Testicular Cancer.
No-Shave November and Movember doesn't end at only letting your facial hair grow out. There is more to it. The concept is simple:
1. Let the hair grow out.
2. Donate money that you would normally spend on hair maintenance to different organizations that support men's health.
3. Bring awareness to men's health and cancers affecting the lives of millions of men and their families around the world.
No Shave November is no longer just a trend to me. I feel more empowered and motivated to support any causes for the health and strong function of men. If I'm about men's health, surely I can forfeit 1 month of shaving for a cause greater than me. I decided that this is what I will do. On gregorylafortune.com/about you'll find a core belief that says:
"In every successful community, there are responsible men who lead, hold themselves accountable, and prioritize their health & well-being."
Blazing a trail for men's health is what I'm here to do. Just think about the men in your life. Whether diagnosed with cancer or not, one of the best things you can do is encourage them to take care of their physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. This includes finding resources to help support their health. Please see the following links below to learn more about these movements during Men's Health Awareness Month and resources on men's health.