I’m Too Sexy For My Hair

I fell so hard in the clinic the other day. I was walking in and stumbled over my stupid numb toes. I cried out in pain and strangers came running. A little too cocky with my walking skills, I should have been using my walker instead of my walking poles. They put me in a wheelchair, took my vitals and did an incident report. I’m just relieved I didn’t hit my head. My doctor checked me out and everything seemed ok until I got home. Both knees, one ankle and the opposite foot started to hurt. I iced them all evening. I woke up in the middle of the night to use the restroom and I couldn’t put any weight on my foot. I sat and cried because I didn’t know what to do. I already have a hard enough time getting around. Luckily with the aid of some pain killers, towards the end of the day I started feeling better and was able to walk again.

you can see some bruises on my legs from my fall… but how cute is my sweet support doggo?

LOTS of chemo this week. On top of IVs, tummy shots and a lumbar puncture, I started a new chemo pill. The pharmacist said to not let anyone else touch the pills, keep them in the bottle (not in a pill box), and to wash my hands after I take them. If it’s that toxic to touch, imagine what it’s doing to my insides. Or don’t, chemo gives me enough anxiety as is – *insert emoji with huge “ahh” eyes.

I haven’t been nauseous yet, thankfully, but I woke up today with a headache and crazy body aches. The mouth sores are back. I’m also having difficulty with my vision. It’s hard to read this page even. I just feel unwell.

I’m on a break from my steroids thank goodness because the lack of sleep, puffiness and constant need to be eating were getting to me. One morning I was craving pizza for breakfast so I made (my mum made) a pizza bagel. Bagels make it breakfast-y. On a scale of 1-10, it was yum-tacular.

we should normalize pizza for breakfast

I look like cancer. A few years ago, when I worked for a kids cancer organization, I was with a group of kiddos at Alcatraz and requested for all of them to ride in the ADA cart to the top (it’s a long walk up a huge hill from the boat) and the attendant looked over at the group and said “all of them?” and I said “yes, we are a kids cancer organization” and he said “well they don’t all look sick” and I wanted to SMACK him. How do you know what “sick” looks like, bro? Don’t worry, I didn’t inflict violence and the kiddos got the ride to the top of “The Rock”. Well I look sick af. I glance in the mirror and I’m like woah. I’m super pale with weird bags under my eyes. My face is v round like a Cabbage Patch Kid. My hair is falling out like crazy. I think I look like Uncle Joey’s woodchuck puppet from Full House. The resemblance is uncanny, ay?

Same Same. *images are from google. please don’t sue me. the images of me are mine. obvi

As I was walking through the clinic the other day I took in all the people around me. I’m one of the younger patients there by far (sometimes I see other young adults but not often). But I just thought how sad it is that, because of covid, we can’t have any guests in the cancer center. If covid wasn’t happening these people would have their significant others, children or friends to help push them in a wheelchair, keep them company in the waiting room (where we spend a lot of time), and hold their hands during treatment. I’m ok going in on my own because I’m an I-N-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-T (do you know what that mean) woman but maybe I would feel differently if I had the option. Plus my mum has to spend a lot of time in the clinic’s parking lot.

how beautiful is this tree? mum really nailed it this year

In the wise words of Phoebe Buffay, 

“Happy Christmas Eve Eve”

*Pretend it’s yesterday – I meant to post then but I had a rough lp, almost fainted, went to bed as soon as I got home and didn’t get a chance to hit publish and don’t want to take out my “Friends” reference . mmk thanks.

Tootles Mermaid Hair

I have the most beautiful hair. People compliment it all the time. I don’t dye it, dry it, or use any special products. It’s just au natural. I always considered it my best asset. I liked to hide my body insecurity underneath it as well. In the back of my mind I always worried that if I was diagnosed with cancer that I wouldn’t know how to manage without my hair.

My first few thoughts after finding out I have leukemia was 1. my life’s about to change significantly 2. how’s this going to affect my fertility? (that’ll be a post for another day, perhaps) and 3. bye bye beautiful hair.

At first I thought I’d donate it since I didn’t want it to go to waste but then people kept saying why don’t you make a wig for yourself? I’d need to buy one anyway, why not use my own hair? Duh.

So I cut it off.

I had no idea that when I went to the doctor on that Monday that I’d be spending the next however many weeks in a hospital so I was so unprepared. I didn’t have a brush so I hadn’t brushed my hair in days. It was a complete mess. But I wanted to get it cut off while it was still healthy. I had to put it into a million ponies after a full day of brushing out dreadlocks. And then a sweet nurse cut each pony off and placed it into a bag one by one. Then she buzzed the rest and then BOOM I’m bald!

I thought I’d be more emotional but I didn’t cry or anything. I just sat there and chit chatted with the nurse about her kids and then it was over.

Some days I sit here and think how am I doing all this? I just take it one day at a time. That’s how it was with cutting my hair off. I just did it. I remember a therapy session once when I was going through a rough patch I told my therapist I was having a hard time doing things I used to like to do and then one day I just got up and went for a hike, or went to church, or met a friend for coffee and she asked how I was able to do it and I said “I dont know, I just did”. I don’t really have an explanation for how I’m dealing with all this. I just do it. I guess you gotta do what you gotta do.

Ok I lied, I had a little emo moment in all of this. I was concerned that my BFF Amelia’s daughter wouldn’t recognize me without my hair so I FaceTimed her before I cut my hair off and then a few days after to show her the difference. She was a little standoffish but she was eating dinner and she’s 2. In my mind, she just didn’t know who she was talking to. Amelia texted me the next morning and said she asked Alana when she was putting her to bed, “Did you get to talk to Auntie EE on FaceTime today?” and Alana replied, “Yes, EE wearing green shirt”. Which instantly made my heart melt because my (awful) hospital gown is green. She recognized me.

We found a wonderful local place to make my wig. It’s a little on the expensive side but it’s worth it to help me feel a little more like myself. Plus my sweet grandma wanted to do something to help so she’s covering it. Which makes it a little more special.

Amelia picked up my precious cargo yesterday from the hospital along with a wave from the “waving bridge” and dropped it off at the salon. They weighed my hair at 8.5oz! I’ll have a gorgeous wig of my own hair in about 12 weeks.

Until then I’m rocking this bald head!

#nofilter

My hair hasn’t started falling out yet so it’s actually growing in a little. I feel a bit like a Chia Pet at the moment. It’s fuzzy and fun to pet.

When I get released from the hospital, I may whip out some pink wigs from Halloween and plan to accessorize with bright lipsticks and funky earrings so stay tuned for some epic looks.