This morning in my Facebook memories, I got the reminder that 9 years ago today I was going bald due to chemo treatment. First I had noticed my hair falling out in the shower a few days earlier. The day of this post was the say I decided to just shave the remaining hair off.
I really struggled with my hair loss. It felt like people then would be able to tell that I was battling cancer, and I wasn’t waiting for “pity” looks. It was hard to loose my breast, but people couldn’t tell I only had 1 left, you couldn’t see at first glance that I was battling this battle, but with losing my hair I thought that I got “cancer” stamped on my forehead. It was a struggle, I admit it was hard. Some people take it easier then others, I was one of them that struggled with it.
I remember that the next day, or maybe was it the week after, that I had to fly to Oahu for an appointment…. I was wearing a scarf, and a facial mask at the airport. On Maui TSA was really nice, they just asked me to lower my mask for a second and that was it. The mask was to protect me from other people’s germs etc while my blood count was low. I felt uncomfortable and insecure with my scarf and mask.
On my way back, the TSA on Oahu was not as nice. I hadn’t put my mask on while in line for TSA, but ofcourse I was wearing my scarf. They asked me if I could remove my scarf, I declined explaining that I had just lost my hair due to chemo and that I still felt very uncomfortable and insecure about my bald had. Next I know they pull me to the side, in everyone’s view, to pad me down. I felt so uncomfortable, I was shocked, I understand they have to do their job, but couldn’t they ask if I was comfortable there out in the open? I wasn’t. I would have been ok pulling my padding out of my bra to ask if they wanted to check that, but my bald head?!……
But guess what, I survived, I rocked my scarfs, I was never really comfy to rock my bald head outside, but as soon as I had a little hair I retired the scarfs. This also passed, like many things in this journey, and then there are things that dont pass, like lymphedema, and that’s ok.
I remember that I still had to shave my legs while I was bald, not as often, but that didn’t stop growing. Don’t ask me why, seriously, if you take my hair, please take that too next time. And my eyebrows and eye lashes didnt fall out till my hair started growing back. One morning I was trying to put on mascara, and was wondering why nothing was going on (wasn’t wearing my glasses or contacts) then a grabbed my 3x mirror and noticed only 1 eyelash. That explained……
When you go through any journey, it’s ok to struggle, it’s ok to be sad, or what ever you need to feel, but know that it will pass.
Thank you for allowing me to share my experience with you.