Monday, July 23, 2007

It’s real

There’s something about losing your hair…. Now that I’m bald, it’s hard to deny anymore that I am undergoing chemotherapy for cancer. It’s an undeniable and irreversible milestone.

Yes, I know it will grow back eventually, and hopefully even curlier than before. But for now it feels like I’ve reached the point of no return.

For the most part, I’ve experienced very little in the way of side effects. In the past three weeks, there was one day when I was feverish, and a couple more when I had a rash of symptoms, including a fainting spell that may have been hypoglycemic and not related to the treatment at all. I haven’t been nauseous in the slightest, which is something to rejoice about. I’ve had headaches that may be due to meds, but are more likely coming from stress, and some low energy days filled with naps. But as far as the horrors of chemo I’d heard about beforehand, this is relatively simple.

Except for the hair.

It’s been hot, so I like going naked-headed to keep cool when I’m alone in the house. I can avoid mirrors pretty successfully, but there are unanticipated reflections all over the place: in windows when it’s dark outside, my laptop screen when I boot up, the oven door, the television screen, the glass in picture frames. These things are all over the house. My eyes travel to where I usually look, and I’m greeted by ET, an alien from another planet! It’s really weird.


Toni M. Feltman said...

Take a picture of your naked head. I can imagine that today you have no desire to look back on this experience but in the future you may just wonder what you really looked like. :-)

Ceil said...

Good idea Toni. Done.

After the surgery for the initial melanoma lesion, I used to say it looked like an animal had chewed on my foot. It took a long time to heal, the closest thing I've ever experienced to watching paint dry. I never took pictures of it, and regretted it many times since.

On the plus side of this hair loss business... I'm developing a relationship with my face. :)

I stil don't have the nerve to walk around in public with nothing on my head, but in the privacy of my own space, I kind of like who I see.