May 26, 2013

Wigged Out!

Tresses. Locks. Mop. Curls. Coiffure. Birds Nest. Mane. Tendrils. Hair. 

To a woman, hair is fashion statement, a form of self expression. Hair is one of the very the first things you notice when you meet someone. Hair is part of a woman's sex appeal. A good hair day can give a gal an immense amount of confidence and a bad hair day ruins everything. I know you know what I'm talking about, ladies!

So when I ran the comb through my head Saturday morning and was literally able to fill the toilet bowl with my own hair, I went into a state of shock. I just cut my hair a week ago in hopes that when the doctor said "thinning" hair from chromo treatment, it meant just that, thinning. In reality, and according to my chemo nurse, it means I could likely end up with a head full of peach fuzz. Figures that is how a man would describe "thinning". 

I feel vain worrying about my hair at a time when I should be worried about fighting for my life, but I can't help it. My hair has always been a source of discontent, a real life love-hate relationship. In my younger years I despised my frizzy curls. I always wanted Marcia Brady's long, straight, flowing blonde locks. As I grew older and learned styling techniques and started experimenting with color, I started to appreciate my hair. I was always changing from long to short. Red to brown and then back to blonde again. I was even able to achieve Marcia Brady's hair thanks to the invention of Keratin Treatments. Her long, straight, flowing blonde locks were now mine, ALL MINE! 
Noahie & me (and my Marcia Brady locks)

When you're wearing a wig, there is no way to look like you're not wearing a wig. Period. Unless you've got a bank role the rivals Beyonce, that just ain't happening. The harsh reality; wigs are expensive. Even cheap wigs are expensive. Sure some insurance plans will cover up to 80% of the cost for "Cranial Hair Prosthesis" (insurance companies do NOT like the term wig). But there are other factors to consider. Human hair wigs look great and cost a fortune. The upkeep of real hair wigs is just like that of real hair, you need to wash and style frequently, not something most chemo patients are up to doing. Synthetic wigs are less upkeep, still spendy but more attainable. They hold their shape better and look OK. Then one must consider length. I live in Florida. Have you heard about Florida summers? The days average 90 degrees with 90% humidity. Spending any length of time outdoors is like walking through a steam bath fully clothed. The last thing this chemo gal wants on her head is a long, wiggy mane. They may look great indoors until you walk outdoors. Plus, they have no pony tail potential. And did I mention my recent ovarian extraction? Yeah, you guessed it. Long wigs don't work great when one is hot flashing every hour, on the hour. Wigs also come in three lengths, long, medium and short. Sure if I had a few hundred extra laying around I might be inclined to buy a long human hair wig and have it cut to my specifications. However the human hair comes from China, Indonesia, India and Eastern Europe, some of the most impoverished areas on the globe. Although I have no proof, it's hard to believe that those women sacrificing their incredibly long, beautiful hair is truly on the up and up. Can you see that all this has me a bit wigged out? 

Rather than wait until the inevitable happens, I haul my tired ass out of bed and drive to the wig store at my local mall. I would rather spend time shopping around, going to as many stores as I can find, trying on dozens of wigs, but my energy level is just not there. I feel like I need to give in to the first half-decent wig that comes along. And I do. Don't get me wrong, I tried on at least a dozen. Wigs that looked like helmets on my head, wigs that made me look like a Dutch boy, plus a wig with long flowing locks that was hotter than fuck, even in the air conditioned comfort of the store. 

I have my trusty Raquel Welch wig on stand by. I will now spend the next few days living in denial, filling my toilet bowl with hair, morning, noon and night, as I struggle with the idea that maybe, just maybe, I will be one of the lucky ones that only "thins" instead of turning into a big peach fuzz head. In the meantime, I pray to the Gods of Clarity that I can come to terms with yet another stage of my new "normal". 
our cat, Mulder, is not sure what to think about my new wig

Gettin' Wiggy wit it! Eat your heart out, Raquel! 


  1. u look great and mom(crystal) thinks so tooooooooo!!!! u r always in our prayers and madi talks about u often....and we still get comments about all the beautiful pics yoou took on honeymoon island....especially the one in the water when it was freeeeeeezing cold....thank u so much for doing that even when you knew u were ill....what a beautiful gift to us and to life itself!!!! blessings, berni graham

  2. You look outstanding girl! Love the smile as well.