Saturday, September 11, 2010

Losing My Hair and Keeping it all in Perspective

There is a ticking time bomb when it comes to cancer treatment and it is all about the hair loss.  The literature explains that if you get the red stuff,  Adriamycin, "almost all patients will lose all of their body hair."  You know that this side effect is coming your way.  I've been in contact with other cancer patients and through them I learned that most patients experience the hair loss in the 14-21 day range. So by day 10, you hear that time bomb ticking.  Every hair on your brush makes you wonder if today is the day.  You keep hoping that "almost" isn't every because you hear stories from family and friends of their aunt, father, grandfather who went through chemotherapy and never lost their hair.  But you are just waiting for the bomb to explode.

For me, it was a nice reliable time bomb.  Day 14 and I started to notice that I was losing body hair.  It was Friday and I had a busy weekend planned.  I just kept thinking "please just a few more days with my hair." I want to go to the Football game and Volleyball tournament with hair.  I made it through working at the concession stand fine.  I was on the cash register so I was busy almost the entire night.  No time to think about my hair.  I noticed a few strands but nothing shocking.
This morning I noticed the first clump of hair, when I say clump I mean a group of about 30 hairs all in the same area of my head.  I am sitting at the volleyball tournament trying not to touch my hair.  It isn't like my hair is just dropping out but if I run my fingers through my hair or scratch my head, clump.  For me this is difficult. I'm always running my fingers through my hair or sweeping my bangs out of my face.  Don't touch your hair, Don't touch your hair, Don't touch your hair is running through my mind on a constant loop.

Then my husband gets a call, his cousin at the age of 49 has had a massive heart attack and died.   He has a girl close to Shelby's age and 2 little boys.  It made losing my hair seem like nothing.

Maybe tomorrow I will have some more fun with losing my hair.  Maybe I'll  have a Mohawk with some bright color or maybe I'll shave just half of my head.  I do know that as long as I'm here, it doesn't matter if I don't have hair.


  1. So sorry for the loss of Gary's cousin, what a year it has been....Jim's 20 year old cousin just passed last week (I'll fill you in later.) It certainly puts life in perspective, but that doesn't mean it will be easy loosing your hair. I'm thinking of you with love and prayers. Lisa

  2. It's a small thing, comparatively for sure. What I want to know is if your wicked long arm hair is finally gone! :)

  3. I love you Jennifer - one of the first things I shaved down way that freaky long arm hair. Then I wondered why hadn't done it before or at least after watching one late night infomercial for the No-No.