cancerKaren’s first bout with cancer wasn’t so bad. A week in hospital following surgery, then six months of radiation treatments. After that, she was cancer-free for seven years.

When the cancer returned, it came back with a vengeance. More surgery. Now came the chemotherapy, and all that went with it.

I’m So Lucky

The chemotherapy treatments every two weeks weren’t so bad when actually administered. The fun started about three days later, when the chemo punched Karen in the gut. But she took it in stride, as was her style.

She knew the nausea was coming, so she planned on having nothing but liquids on the third day post-treatment. Trial and error told her which liquids she could tolerate. She would smile her mischievous grin and say, “I’m so lucky. I get to spend an entire day, or even two maybe, just lounging around and drinking.”

Hair in the Shower

It was no different when her hair fell out. She said her bathroom looked like a poodle parlor after she showered because there was so much hair caught in the drain guard.

As her hair thinned, she first got it cut into a short style. As the hair loss continued, she tried wearing wigs and turbans. But the tufts of remaining hair itched beneath them.

She solved the problem with what she called her “Britney Spears” look: a pair of clippers, a few passes over her head, and she sported her buzz style. Now the turbans, scarves and wigs didn’t itch.

Is My Hair on Straight?

Like any woman, Karen wanted a full head of luxurious hair. She had that before cancer came along. But she knew, once her hair began to fall out, that it would never be that way again. She managed it with her usual flair; she was, after all, a self-described “bling-baby” at heart.

She had wigs in every color she found interesting. Today she may be blonde, tomorrow could see black-haired Karen or even bedazzled, silver pompom head Karen. Her philosophy: “I paid for it; it’s my hair. I wear what I want.”

She continued to wear turbans or caps at times, to protect her scalp more than make a fashion statement. Whatever the occasion, she had a wig or another head covering to match. She would always ask, before stepping out, “Is my hair on straight?”

Karen didn’t see her hair loss as a negative; she saw it as permission to let her inner bling-baby shine.

And shine she did.

At Transitions Hair Loss Centers, we know hair loss as a result of cancer treatments can be both scary and confusing. If you are an individual that is going through this, we understand that you are coping with not only a serious medical condition, but also with the social stigma that accompanies hair loss. Finding the right wig is an important step. To find a Transitions Hair Loss Center near you, click here.

 

Photo Credit: AdinaVoicu Via Pixabay

 

Resources:

 

http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/chemotherapy/in-depth/hair-loss/ART-20046920

 

http://www.webmd.com/cancer/chemo-hair-loss

 

https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/hair-and-scalp-problems/alopecia-areata

 

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