Sunday, May 10, 2009


This was a big weekend for baldness. Or, well, semi-baldness. See, in continuing my attempts at positive thinking I'm figuring the hair will start growing back any day now. Okay, okay, any week now. So I won't be bald that much longer. Now, I'll have stubble, and then a serious crew cut and other sundry short-short styles. And of course, there's the "it will be darker and curlier" phenomenon. But the point is, I won't be bald for that much longer and since I don't ever plan on being bald again (not that this adventure was planned...or virtually any other part of my life as it is today...let's not think about that for too long....), I decided we needed photos to preserve for posterity exactly what my skull looks like. And, you need an update on how Chris's hair is looking too. So here you have both of us.

Not a bad photo considering Chris is actually the one taking the photo (yep, it's the arm out with camera pointed in the general direction of our heads do-it-yourself shot usually seen in vacation photo albums). So you will likely notice two things. 1) Man, does Chris have a lot of hair. A lot. I will never catch up to that, and 2) I didn't lose all of my hair. Sure, 95% of it, but there are some strong little guys just hanging in there. We had buzzed it down to about a 1/4 of an inch back on March 13th, just before it really started falling out. So now those hairs have grown to be about an inch long. No reason to shave them, and I kinda admire their fortitude. When I get out of the shower and dry my head, these hairs stand straight up. Chris calls it "little hair, BIG attitude."

The second big baldness-ish adventure was that I went out in public in just the head scarf. Hey, it's hot out. I do have the hives/ allergy issue and I just couldn't see bothering with a wig just to go to Target and my office (even though odds are high I'll run into someone I know at Target). So, I just went with the scarf. When I'm on a project (like shopping!) I forget what I'm wearing and what I look like, so it's not really that big of a deal. (I probably would however, be acutely aware of it were I out and about bald...and somehow I expect there'd be stares to remind me. A nearly 6 foot tall bald woman is not likely to slip by unnoticed in too many places). But I did notice at one point that the scarf is a "cancer sign" and that certain women can recognize it. I'm sure I would never have given it a second thought prior to my diagnosis if I had seen a woman in a head scarf like mine. Just as I wouldn't have really noticed the super short, dark hair as anything other than a very practical hair style choice. Like sensible shoes (Hey, not my choice, but I can see the appeal for others). But today, twice, I noticed women--both in their 60s or so-- looking at me with this sort of knowing, kind smile. I didn't quite understand it the first time, but the second time, the woman made eye contact and I suddenly realized--ah, she recognizes the "cancer sign." She's "been there, done that" so to speak. It was actually a nice feeling. There is a good side to the "Cancer Club." I felt oddly supported, and she didn't even say a word. Just smiled.

So there's a photo of the head-scarf look. Just so you are in the know and can be supportive when you see "the look" too. The next photo...well, it's unmistakably the Chemo Coif.

All in all, this was a good weekend. Physically, I'm not back to 100% (and not just because of the hairdos) but emotionally and psychologically, I felt really good this weekend. Lots of energy and productivity. In many ways I just felt normal. And normal, like the five loads of laundry I did, has never felt so good.


  1. God only made so many perfect heads,the rest he gave hair. Look at all those warrior hairs though. They are strong and mighty and soon they will hide that shapley cranium. Oh well,so be it. Hair is a good thing too---I will be anxiously waiting to see how it comes in. Mine was so different and still is, at least to me. Brave girl--bravo. Chris, you rock and so does the hair, When you do the "Samson" thing, you should consider a"locks of love"--all that hair would be a waste on the stylists floor--:)Eat your wheaties and PACE yourself,T.

  2. Teresa,

    I have to say still beatiful as ever, hair or no! I was next to a woman at the hair salon this week and her stylist was explaining to her how much longer her hair would be curly etc. You guessed it, breast cancer chemo was nature's "perm". I guess her hair used to be straight as a board and the curls confused her BUT, she looked great with them. Get healthy, I'm so looking forward to this weekend! It's been way to long, we are all old now :)

    Kathy G

  3. I haven't even read the blog but had to say what a touhing photo that is. I think is sums up everything I know of you and Chris. Beautiful.


  4. You are a very brave person Teresa. That picture made me cry.

  5. I didn't mean to make anyone cry. I hope you are crying because it's a poignant photo and not because you find my baldness tragic. It's not tragic. I'm not tragic. And, it's almost over. The beauty of the photo though, that continues.

  6. Well T, you did get us all (I believe that would be unanimous) on that one photo. All the updates and photos have been stellar but this one snapshot showed a softness and vulnerability and showed (to me) the true battle of the mind,body and soul when one battles this illness-- and all others. The fragility and aching sweetness of life. The other photos are you in fight mode"in your face" with battle gear and attitude.You are a warrior and you are part of the "C" sisterhood and brotherhood--there you go. Stay strong!

  7. That is a great photo. Chris did a super fantastic job! Usually when I try to do self portraits some part of me or the other person gets cut out. Therefore that picture goes right to the "trash" file. The black and white makes it even more beautiful. And it does show the true relationship you two have and he really is a great guy for taking such good care of you (and Seamus) and maintaining the sense of humor that he has through all of it. I'd say this will be a story for the grandkids, but, you know.... And yes, look at those tough little hairs! Stubborn like the owner!

  8. Yeah, T -- the photo that gets us all. Helga said it best, you're the warrior, baby, but I know, and now see, the soft side. Thanks for sharing it. You're very very brave!! You are truly my hero! (as is Chris!) Love B

  9. Comments mean we care? what does that mean, if the blog readers are "corrected" when they express feelings?


Comments mean you care. That's all I'm saying.