Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Hair today...

One of the major side effects of chemo, that most people know about, is hair loss. It might surprise some people that not all chemotherapy does cause hair loss. However Carbo-taxol treatment, which is what I am having, does. It is the paclitaxel element that makes the hair fall out. Carboplatin alone may cause a little thinning but not complete loss. My hair started falling out in earnest about 10 days after my first treatment. It was only at minor nuisance level but I decided I would get rid of it all in one go. I had already cut my hair quite short, but having heard that someone found their bowl of cornflakes covered in bristles, I decided not to risk leaving it!
Mr G clippered my hair really short then I set about my head with my trusty ladyshave. I have generally been using an epilator on legs and such, so had not used the razor for ages. It was an interesting experience - the noise of the razor echoed around my skull in a rather un-nerving manner. We had tried a wet shave but we chickened out as neither of us wanted me to be walking around with my scalp covered in scraps of tissue on all the nicks. Anyway after about half an hour of buzzing I had reduced my hair to a 'flock' (fuzzy textured wallpaper) type look. It was apparent where the hair had largely fallen out - my head looked like a random new world flock covered globe. So far, so good. What I hadn't bargained for was the velcro like behaviour of what remained of my hair. I have chosen to use multiway neck/head tubes (often known as Buffs (TM), other brands available). These are soft microfibre and very versatile. This property however meant that, as soon as one went near my head, the flock like bristles so attached themselves to the fabric that it was instantly fixed. Trying to arrange the tube in an attractive and satisfying manner resulted in many swears and much aggravation. I have now mastered a stealth approach by shaping my head covering and plonking it on quickly, then removing myself from the mirror before I have time to become critical.
To set off my look, I have taken to remembering to wear earrings all the time. Today I went to the shop in a spotted, pale blue, artfully arranged head covering, with dangly silver earrings. The lady in the queue behind me commented on how lovely my earrings were. Madam, I do not know who you were, but you made me a very happy lady.
Today is not all about cancer!