Have you heard those stories where the spouse or friend shaves his or her head to support the cancer patient? I have, and so has my husband. He offered to shave his head when I lost my hair, but I declined his offer.
Why would I decline? It seems so sweet, right? And if you’re going to look or be different, it’s always fun to do so with a good friend right? Well, my reason is, plain and simple, selfish.
If he shaves his head, his hair will grow back right away. That’s not fair, and it kind of makes me feel jealous.
So it remains that he has hair and I have a bald (ish) head.
Yes, bald (ish).
When we shaved my head the first time, my scalp looked funny. Not super smooth-you could still see that some of the hair hadn’t fallen out. In fact, right before chemotherapy #2, it actually grew a little bit (microscopically, but it grew). But as I entered the fourteenth day after chemo #2, the little stubble pieces began to fall out. (Coincidentally, my hair started falling out on day fourteen after chemo #1 too). So now I’m losing my “hair” all over again. This time the pain is not as bad, but it itches like crazy. Every time I’m in a bathroom, I rip off the
wild animal pelt wig and itch my bald head like crazy. My hands come away covered in little tiny pieces of hair, kind of like the hair that clings to the side of the sink after a man shaves his face. I guess by the end of chemotherapy my head will be smooth and shiny.
I love how some of the students at my school are reacting to my head. A lot of sweet kids have said they like my hair or head scarves. But one kid was priceless. (Though the kid that said I looked like a pirate is awesome too.)
Kid: Why did you cut your hair?
Me: Because I wanted to.
Kid: Why do you wear hats?
Me: Because they go with my outfit.
Kid: Is that a wig?
Me: Yes it is.
Kid: What kind of cancer do you have?
Me: I have been diagnosed with breast cancer. (still trying to avoid saying I HAVE cancer)
Kid: Do you like Sponge Bob? I have a Sponge Bob backpack.
Such a fun conversation! But what’s best is he taught me a little lesson. He addressed the CANCER thing then moved on. That’s nearly impossible for me right now, but I sure do aspire to be just like that! My bald head is a glaring reminder, but one day my hair will grow in and stay in, and I won’t have to wear an
itchy blanket wig all the time.
Being bald is weird, and every time I look in the mirror, a stranger is looking back at me. That’s sort of rough. I appreciate that my husband was willing to join me in the bald club, but I think looking at his bare head would be more of a cancer reminder than I need (plus there’s all the jealousy stuff). I CAN’T WAIT FOR MY HAIR TO GROW BACK. I never want to have anything to do with hair loss ever again.
So if you end up with cancer and you want me to be the supportive shaver, I politely decline. I’ll take you to chemo, I’ll make you a meal, but I will never be bald again. Ever.