Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Ohhh, my poor hair!

Definitely losing my hair...

It's interesting to me how much women are almost defined by their hair. When I was told of all the other side effects I would be enduring--the nausea, etc.--I thought, well, whatever! No problem! I can totally deal with this! Even just thinking about losing my hair, well, it was really no big deal. But when I pulled that first abnormally large handful off of my head the other day, I sort of started to re-think about that. "But, wait...that's MY hair! Where is is going?" See, guys have it good. You guys can shave off your hair, and no one is going to think that you are "going through a phase" or "becoming a rebellious feminist" or something of that nature. No one is going to stare, because guys just normally have short hair anyway. See, with women, it's different. Our hair is part of who we are, part of what makes us an individual. When that goes away, our sense of individuality goes away. In a sense, we lose a little bit of who we are. THAT'S why it's such a big deal when women lose their hair as a result of chemotherapy. A woman shaving her head is just not as natural an act as a man shaving his.

Don't worry, I don't want people to start shaving their heads to help me through this; nor am I having an identity crisis because my hair is falling out. It's just another one of those things I have to deal with in the journey to recovery. I can complain about it because I didn't inflict this on myself, so once in a while, I am entitled to a little whining. I'm going to miss my hair, but if it means that the treatment is working and the cancer won't come back, then off with the hair!

The muscle aches started yesterday and I was able to get through most of today without taking anything, but it became bad enough this afternoon that I took some ibuprofen (on top of the percocet for the jaw pain). I'm not really feeling too much better, but I am supposing it would be worse were I not taking anything at all. I have a tiny bit of bone pain from the Neulasta, but it's not a lot (thankfully). So far, so good, and hopefully the Neulasta will do what it's supposed to do and keep those WBC's up and functioning.

Yesterday, I withdrew from all of my classes, turned in my leave of absence form for school, and paid back my tuition refund to the bursar. So I am officially not a student for at least this semester. It feels a bit odd not attending classes for the first time in almost five years. I still have my incompletes to finish, so hopefully that will keep me busy for a little while.

Well, I'm going to get ready for Damages tonight--I love that show!

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