I hit another milestone recently.
This time it was a mostly pleasant one.
A couple of weeks ago hubby looked at me and said, “When was the last time you had a haircut anyway?”
And this question was coming from the man who would probably prefer I still wear it long, straight and flowing …
“I don’t remember,” I answered. “I guess it must be over two years ago, you know, before cancer.”
Upon examining my hair more closely in the mirror over the next few days after that question, I decided it might indeed be time for that next big step. In fact, it was past time!
I needed a haircut!
The day had finally arrived when I had re-grown enough hair to warrant a trip to the salon, but now the only question was which one to go to? I found myself asking…
Do I go to an actual beauty salon?
Do I go to the local Great Clips or Cost Cutters?
How about the mall?
Or do I drive a greater distance to go somewhere more “reputable” because clearly I needed help?
Do I return to the tiny salon I visited when wig shopping that hot July day where they treated me so kindly even though I couldn’t decide on a wig, left empty handed and cried all the way home?
So many choices…
I ended up picking the same old chain salon I used to go to.
Once I arrived in the parking lot the next question popped into my head.
You know the one, right?
Do I tell?
Do I mention this is my first haircut in over two years? Do I ask for my old stylist? Do I tell the stylist I had chemo recently or do I keep quiet?
As it turned out, my old stylist was taking a little time off. Darn.
I decided to keep quiet.
Well, that didn’t last long; no surprise there!
The stylist made some remarks about my fragile locks (yes they’re more fragile now) and suddenly I found myself blurting out, “I had chemo recently and this is my first haircut in over two years.”
Why did I tell?
I have no idea.
Maybe it was because the place wasn’t busy and no one was sitting next to me. Maybe it was because the stylist seemed kind. Maybe it was because she mentioned she, too, had trouble styling her thin hair. Maybe I needed an excuse to help explain my shaggy locks and nervous demeanor about a haircut.
Maybe I just can’t keep quiet!
Most likely it was because I told her I was struggling to figure out what to do with my new head of hair that’s lacking more than a bit of its old luster.
I wasn’t one of the “lucky ones” whose hair returned better than ever when it regrew following chemo.
I wonder if anyone actually regrows hair that is better, or if this is another one of those myths out there…
It sure didn’t happen for me.
Anyway, the very kind and soft-spoken stylist and I proceeded to have a lovely conversation. We discussed cancer, spring, hair, dogs, and other stuff.
The cancer part didn’t take over the entire conversation and that felt nice.
She offered me a few hair styling tips that I probably won’t ever try, but … you never know.
The main thing is –
I had my first post-chemo haircut!
I reached another milestone!
Still, I won’t be giving up my caps any time soon.
NOTE: My old stylist came back for my next haircut! Yay!
Did you experience chemo-induced hair loss?
If you did, do you have your hair back yet and if so, is it different now?
If you had chemo and did not lose your hair, how did people react?
If you did not have chemo, was your hair still affected by your treatment?