The fall out.
I had a hair appointment on Tuesday, the first one since September of last year. When I was trading massage for hair I got it done every 6 weeks and I called it “hairapy,” I always had the coolest locks because my friend is a magician and I let her do whatever she felt. I had known I had lost some hair but it was more of a knowledge that was kept on a back shelf of my mind, I really didn’t dwell on it. When my friend had me gowned up and started brushing through it I saw a stricken look on her face as she carefully asked “Have you noticed that your hair has changed?” I started crying. It’s funny, I could get ominous test results and though I didn’t feel great about it, I didn’t shed a tear every time this happened. I didn’t cry when I was told I would never go into remission either. Don’t get me wrong, I have had some low moments often created by seemingly endless surgeries cutting chunks off of my body that will forever leave it altered, I have cried, mostly in front of my husband or loved ones, a fleeting storm of emotional rain that cleared up soon after and usually made me feel better but this got me a little different. Maybe it was that camel straw, all that has happened and then this?! Go fuck yourself cancer and the treatment horse you rode in on (however ridiculous that sounds). My friend said the price of my hair thinning was worth it and I suppose she’s right theoretically but it doesn’t really make the pain go away. I asked her “Should we shave it?” And she said “No, you had a major shed, there are lots of baby hairs growing in, it’s not time for that just yet.” Just yet…I know this is a shallow thing and people go through worse, often losing their hair straight off. I am haunted by the memory of shaving my mothers head as she sat on a bar stool in her garbage and dog shit laden backyard in the hot sun, her once gloriously thick mane stringy as patches of sweat laden bald skin shown through, she insisted that I do it and I felt resentful that she did, the electric razor stuttering on the slickness as I pushed it back and forth, the strands littering the ground around our feet as the sun beat down on the both of us...This is not that but still. I loved my mom but I was so angry at her...It makes me so sad as I write this.
It’s interesting that this memory came through my fingers, I hadn’t put that together until just now. Another layer to unravel, my work is never done.
My friend cut and colored the hair I have, I am probably being dramatic, I do have hair it’s just been a bit ravaged and it may come back, unlike the chunks that have been cut out of my butt. Even if it doesn’t I will acclimate but these are my feelings and this is where I write them down for the world to see if they want to look. I feel better than ever but boo hoo, my hair is gone and it may never come back, wahhhhh, ha! I assure myself that I have a good shaped head and awesome wigs if it comes to that, this will not end me as I continue to acclimate to this feeling that I might be here longer than I had expected, there is a feeling of puberty to this if that makes sense. Perhaps it is part of a metamorphosis, a shedding of my cocoon…I heard somewhere that a butterfly cannot see its own wings. I have said and felt I was pupating, perhaps this is all part of a plan, my body reconstructing around the damage that has been a part of the medicine. I find myself continuing to try and gaslight myself in a way, to belittle these feelings, telling myself I am wrong for feeling this way. That statement in itself shines a light on that and I am going to acknowledge here that it is okay to feel the way that I do. That it is okay to mourn the loss of the pieces of me, now that I feel well enough to actually embody that loss. I am mourning what I have lost and celebrating what can be and I am grateful that I have come this far.
I have hope that I can once again start navigating this world with these new wings when they dry.
Until next time ❤️