Tuesday, August 23, 2011

I Still See Me in the Mirror (even with a shaved head)

Two days ago, my friend Ally shaved my head. My hair had reached a point where it was falling out unprompted and my hairline and the growing bald spots on my head were not hidden well with scarves or creative hair styling. So, I was done with it.

Now, I am nearly bald. Last night, I was relieved when I looked in the mirror and just saw 'me'. Smiling at my reflection, I saw the same rosy cheeks, smiling eyes and crease across my nose. My skin looks mostly the same color (chemo tends to change skin tone a bit) and my topaz earrings shone brightly, no longer impeded by hair. A big change from nearly two years ago, when my first glance at my shaved head screamed, "cancer patient". And the hats and head wraps made me feel even less attractive.

Instead of covering my head up right away like I did last time, I have been avoiding wearing hats around the house. Eventually, after the kids and me are more used to my new look, I may even venture out in public without covering my head. I am not sure if it is because I am feeling brave or because I am bored with my hat collection. Either way, I know the first time out of the house will be hard...but maybe I will like it.. Who knows? I have one nice looking head, after all. I am lucky in that respect.

Admittedly, brave or no, there will be times where wearing a wig is most appropriate. On Wednesday, I am taking my old wig to my hair dresser for some re-shaping. Steve is pushing me to get a real hair wig...and I am beginning to believe that is the way to go...especially after talking to Ally. I just wince at the price a bit. That, and I hear that the upkeep on them is difficult. As usual, I have a lot to learn and have added to my task list some research on real hair wigs. Just what I need, more on my task list.

Yesterday, I had chemo. All went well. However, due to the fact that they premedicate me with a steroid before my Taxol, I find that the night after chemo I do not sleep well. So, I woke up at 4:00 a.m. this morning for no apparent reason. I managed to procrastinate writing in my blog for a couple of hours by playing Words with Friends, entertaining myself of Twitter and catching up on other blogs that I follow. I really enjoy all three of those activities, by the way. My friends on Twitter have a unique way of lifting my spirit, especially. Sometimes, we do not even correspond...I just love their positive spirits and funny posts. (Facebook friends, I love you too...you are just not awake at 4:00 a.m.!)

Next week, I have chemo again, and then a week off. I am finding that chemo is not my focus, which is great. Instead, I am revelling in the last days of summer with my kids, admiring the way they are growing and maturing. I even have them emptying the dishwasher and helping me pick out foods at the Farmers' Markets. Our time together is precious. So very precious. Steve is jealous, but turn about is fair play, right? He is a teacher and always has had a month off with the kids during summer, while I slave away at the office.

My brother and sister-in-law will be in town this weekend for their friends' wedding. Seeing Darin and Kelly always make me smile. I can hardly wait to show Kelly, who has a marvelous green thumb, how our organic garden is growing! It is so fun to go out and grab my own basil and cilantro to add to my raw food dishes.

As I am beginning to ramble, I will end this now and prepare for the busy day ahead. And when I look in the mirror this morning, I think I will even put on a little make-up...because that is what the pre-metastatic cancer Marsi would have done. Then, I will look even more like 'me'. And when I get really brave....I will share some pictures here...Happy Tuesday, all!


  1. Big hug to you... and I can imagine the second time around the hats and scarves would get old FAST for me. You are beautiful inside and out. I've put aside WWF lately for Hanging with Friends. if you want to play that with me let me know. Same name as my twitter handle. We are all cheering for you and I am glad you are trying to enjoy these summer days.

  2. We love you, pumpkin!!

  3. It sounds like you have everything in perspective and under control and that is a beautiful thing. I never wore wigs or scarves. Occasionally, I'd where baseball caps. Hair or no hair, you're still Marsi and you're always beautiful. Lisa regularly kicks my butt on Hanging with Friends and I'd be happy to play with you as well. Big hugs.