Changes . . .
Last night Bob and I were watching television when he looked over and I had tears in my eyes. Looking concerned, he asked if I was in pain. I said No, I was just running my fingers through my hair and relishing the fact that I can still do this. It's funny but something so normal that we take for granted could mean so much to me. Trust me, it's not like I have great hair. Think fine and thin when describing it, but nonetheless, it's my hair and I'm going to lose it.
I've been told my head will begin to feel tingley before my hair begins to fall out. I wonder, how long that will be before it happens. I'm told it's usually 14 days after my first treatment, sometime prior to my next treatment. My next treatment is scheduled for Wednesday, July 26th. When will it begin to fall out? Will it happen before? Will it hurt? What am I going to look like?
I've bought scarves to wear on the off times I don't wear a wig. I've been told by friends who have gone through this how they've handled it. Some wear wigs, some only wear scarves, one never wore anything and felt totally empowered. I have no idea what I'm going to do.
To be honest, I have never looked good in hats - I have a pin head - lol! My girlfriends liked to make me try on hats just to crack up at me. I try on the scarves and am not feeling it. Maybe I'lll change my mind. I can't imagine wearing a wig 24/7.
It's an odd feeling to know you're going to lose your hair. Rationally I know this is going to happen but mentally am I prepared for this? I think losing my hair will really hit me that I have cancer. Silly, isn't it? I've had my breast removed and started chemo and I don't feel like I have cancer? I know, I know, not rational! I think about this. If you look at me, I don't look sick.
What is cancer supposed to look like? I don't look gaunt, my skin coloring is good and I have my hair. I can camouflage my missing breast, I can wear make up to cover any paleness but my hair? Every time I look in the mirror I will see this. I will see a new me - one without hair. What will I feel like when I look in the mirror? Will I feel empowered, angry, sad?
I find myself touching my hair and enjoying the moments I have left of little things - combing, curling, washing, touching. I put it in a pony tail and am happy I'm able to do this. Little things.
I wonder how much more of my physical body I will have to sacrifice for my journey. I mean, come on, isn't it bad enough that I have cancer? I have to give up my breast and my hair too? And when thinking it about it more, the answer is Yes. Yes, I do and it's a small price to pay to live. I need to change my mindset. I need to focus on the big picture. I've readily given up by breast to rid myself of the cancer. I've chosen to have the chemo to help me live a long life. Sacrificing my hair is a part of that decision.
I will shave it off before I have to pull it out in clumps. It will give me some of my power back. I will try and embrace the new me. Cancer can have my hair but it can't have ME. I watched a video of a woman shaving her hair during her second bout with cancer. She said something so profound that helped me immensely. Shaving my head, losing my hair is what HEALING looks like. I am healing, that's all. I am healing and having no hair is a part of the process.
So I will tackle shaving my head when the time comes, I will try and embrace the moment and for now, I will relish in having my hair.