Well I did it. I shaved my head. I now officially look like I have C – or like Sinead O’Connor – whichever way you want to look at it. My hair was falling out in handfuls each day to the point where it looked just plain awful. It became thin, scraggly and itchy! So after days of saying I wanted to buzz it off soon, Kirk acquiesced and asked if I wanted his help with this inevitable task. Indeed I did.
I closed my eyes until the buzzing of the hair trimmer was almost finished. When I looked up I saw a person with C (cancer) and I cried. The moment I’ve been dreading was here, where I actually look the part. Kirk held me gently in his arms and assured me that I looked simply beautiful. I wasn’t so sure about that yet, but acknowledged that it was a moment of ‘moving forward’. While I still have stubbles, I know they will dissipate over the next week or two. I will be bald. I’m now okay with that, as I feel confident this will all become another chapter in my long book of life.
Moments after my head had been shaved, I was in the shower and I experienced the feeling of the water trickling over my naked head for the first time that I recall in my life. It felt so funny. As I dried myself off, the water tickled my scalp and then suddenly my head was cold! I giggled. This new feeling was somehow liberating. I was free of the dead hair. No more hair washing or drying over the next few months. One less task to worry about.
The most humorous moment in all of this was when I laid my head down on the pillow: my head felt like velcro – if it is at all possible to imagine a body part as being velcro. As the little stubbles stuck into the pillow, not allowing my head to slide with ease as I changed positions, I giggled again. This will take a little getting used to!
Yes, I will wear my wig when I’m out in public so that I don’t look like a walking advertisement for C . But when I’m at home, I like to feel ‘free’. I now have the fastest showers ever – no shampoo or conditioner, and the leg and armpit shaving are down to a minimum. Very liberating indeed! Of course I will be ecstatic when I’m finished chemo therapy and my hair begins to grow back. Until then, I think I will enjoy this simplicity factor that has entered into the ever-so-complicated new chapter of my life.