The other day I was standing outside and I could feel summer in the air. I had a great sense of wanting to move forward. I am ready to put away certain books, medicines, decor and other daily reminders of treatments. I even got out my ‘big girl’ bras that had been put away since my first surgery to make room for more comfortable bras during recovery. They somehow crept into my everyday life after I had healed. They almost became symbolic of “wallowing in the mud” of self pity. At some point I began to believe I could no longer wear my regular bras because, after all, I was going through treatments. The sunshine prompted me to want to move forward and not look back. Heck, I’m so over this ‘bald is beautiful’ look..I’m even ready for some hair!
About a month ago, I passed in front of a fan and I felt movement on the top of my head. I was like a baby discovering a new sensation for the first time. I ran to the mirror and what do you know?…HAIR! There was fine little hairs growing all over my head. Every day I’m like an obsessed observer, checking these hairs several times a day. Making sure they haven’t fallen out or been rubbed off by my pillow during sleep. I’ve even started talking to the little sprouts on my head! No joke. My sister laughed when I told her this. But, as I reason, people talk to plants and they grow. Why not talk to my hair!? I massage my head and gently say, “grow little hairs. It’s ok…grow”. Ha! It’s crazy and funny, I know. I am very aware that these fine little hairs are growing much faster than the thick stubble that will actually make up the hair that covers my head. But, I don’t care. At this point, hair is hair. And, the thicker hairs are growing, they are just taking their time. Yes, this hair growth is much earlier than expected. At first I was concerned that chemo might not be working. My doctor explained to me that I was confusing side-effects with treatment. He states he has had people on the same meds who don’t lose their hair and their tumors still shrank…side-effects vary from person to person. So now I know it’s just God answering my prayers and allowing my hair to grow back sooner. Maybe by Christmas I’ll look like a Chia-pet. I can auction myself off as the first life-size Chia-pet with proceeds benefiting my kids’ band program. Ha! (Sometimes you have to laugh or you might go insane)
Today is day 12 in my 4th and final cycle of chemotherapy. This last round left me in the bed for four days, much longer than previous cycles. As soon as I was able to stand up and get around by myself, I packed my bags and went to take care of a family member for three days. It was nice to be upright and out of the house, but I must say it takes a lot of energy to be a caregiver. And I realize how much more I appreciate my husband for all he has done to help me over the past few months.
My energy level has bounced back, but not as much as I would like. My sense of taste is still ‘off’; things taste just odd enough to annoy me. It seems this round is taking longer to get back to normal. But, I’m sleeping better and some days I don’t struggle to find words as much as other days. I’m staying busy with senior pictures for my daughter, graduation parties for friends and getting ready for our family vacation. In another week I’ll be sitting oceanside with my feet in the sand. Then, it’s back to reality with an MRI, doctor appointments and surgery.