Women used to talk about staying home on a Saturday night to wash their hair as if that was a bad thing. Well, I am home on a Saturday night — and much to my delight, I just washed my hair. Yup! I have enough hair to wash. It’s about 1/32nd of an inch long but when I put shampoo on it, it LATHERED! I was so surprised that I actually rinsed and repeated. It’s hard to tell what color it will be. It’s a little brown, a little blonde and a little grey. But hell, it’s a little THERE. To me, it’s a great sign of me returning to being me and that feels great. In fact, in spite of my ongoing radiation treatments, etc, I know this feeling will continue to grow on me!
Well, now I can say it…three down; three to go. I am half way done!!! After six hours of chemo today, I’m tired, and thirsty and have a stomach and headache, and so ready to crash on the couch where I plan on spending the night binging on our Fringe marathon. Actually now that we’ve been watching 4 episodes a night for over two weeks, with all these chemical infusions. I felt a little like a specimen in Walter’s laboratory. And like Olivia on Fringe, I now also feel like I have several versions of myself; my own alternate personalities through a series of wigs. I received them from CancerCare, a great local and national organization (www.cancercare.org) who generously provides financial assistance, counseling and free wigs to anyone in need. I’m not sure yet which universe, or alternate universe, these wigs will work in. I had already purchased a long wig from Allure in Greenwich.But the short ones are so much less of a fuss. I couldn’t decide on one that I liked the most, so the nice director told me I could have all three. Happily, I’ll be able to donate them when I’m done. So, join the Fringe team and vote for your favorite: Jodinator No. 1., No.2 or No.3.
Uh oh. Yikes. “UPS” has arrived and I have to go ship my pants!
A little blast from the past:
Except for Halloween, I’d venture to say that most people have not had the occasion to leave the house wearing a wig. I’d also bet that if you did choose a wig one year as part of your Halloween costume, you couldn’t wait to get it the “F” off your head. I ventured out today to the grocery store wearing a wig, a hat and sunglasses and I have to say, it’s definitely an odd feeling. Now granted, I’m not saying I’m ready to be out there doing the “bald and proud” thing, and it’s freezing out, so having a head covering was a good thing. But I will say that I’m wrestling with how I feel about it. Am I trying to pretend that this new normal is normal? Am I protecting others from having to react to the bald-headed woman looking for lemonade pies in the bakery section? Not sure. Right now, it just feels like I’m trying to be incognito. Bald does not feel beautiful, and wigged feels wiggy.
I guess I’ll take off my glasses.
Hair it is. 18 days after my first chemotherapy and my hair is in the process of leaving my head. It’s not like shedding. It’s more like when the needles fall off the Christmas tree – about four days after you decide to stop watering it! The way it was explained to me, hair has three phases. It’s either growing, sleeping or unrooting itself. Normally, all the hair on your head is in different phases — some is growing, some resting, some falling out. When chemotherapy enters into the mix, it immediately puts all the hair into the sleep cycle – which means it will also fall out pretty much at the same time.
I thought since I had bravely sheared my long locks to the pixie cut and made it through the trying on and buying of a wig, I was emotionally prepared for my impending baldness. Unfortunately, now that that time is here, I’m a little freaked. Tomorrow my genius new master hair cutter Nicky, is going to buzz the rest of it down to a peach fuzz and then that will be that. Never has it been, or will it be more true: Hair today. Gone tomorrow. It will official be Super Bald Sunday.
I have to admit, my self-image and my hair have been all wrapped up in each other for some time now. So, of course losing all of it is quite the fright. But since I start treatment tomorrow, it was time to cut away years of ego and start the process. I’ve chosen a few options. One is the human hair (Yes, Clarisse) wig and the other is this much cooler (temp-wise) thing they call a halo. A company called chemodiva.com will take your hair which you’ve carefully removed in 1/2 inch pony tails and stitch/sew them around a sort of monk-like cap. The idea here is that you can wear it under a hat or a scarf and no one will be the wiser.
Once all my hair was horse-whipped into ponies, the loveliest of hair designers, Nicky, went at me with these things that looked like, but were not, scissors. Needless to say, she gave me the perfect pixie combo, like Michelle Williams meets Carey Mulligan meets Jennifer Lawrence meets Emily Wallace meets Charlize Theron Of course, you would have to have a face like any of those women to make it look that good. But, then we’d really be talking about me getting a big ol’ head! Suffice it to say, my inside circle (to whom I dared to show my pic) all say it looks cute… but let’s face it, what else are they going to say: “Don’t worry it will all be gone in ten days anyway?”
Here’s my big blog promo: if you want to see the haircut, just become an avid follower of my blog, and comment below that you could use a good laugh. I’ll email you one, as long as you promise to not trend it on TMZ.
Today was the day I went wig shopping. In as much as losing your hair is traumatic, once you get over the shock, the idea that I won’t have to wash, blow, brush, comb or style my hair feels a little liberating, not to mention cutting my ‘out-the-door time’ to less than 45 minutes. And I was shocked at how amazingly real lots of wigs can look – especially the one’s made with human hair. Of course, before I wigged out completely, I had to get passed the idea that wearing human hair isn’t something out of Silence of the Lambs. Instead, it’s an amazing thing that others donate their locks, and that companies have gotten so good at making them light and lifelike. The salon I went to had dozens of styles and shades to choose from. I quickly opted out of all the brunettes so as not to piss off Megan Fox for stealing her look. I also passed over a few that made me look like a housewife from the Harper Valley PTA, Judge Judy, Donald Trump, Mark Twain or a K-pop celeb. Instead, I found one that looks just like me having a really good hair day. Add another one to the “bright side.”