Tuesday, April 19, 2011

On Vanity


I don't consider myself a vain sort of person.  If I'm clean and tidy, that is pretty much sufficient for me.  :}

But there is one aspect of this particular detour in the journey of my life that leaves me squirming.  Losing my hair.  :(

For a number of reasons, the prospect of my naked skull is not a pleasant one.  And while I have in the past worn wigs, I was really reluctant to wear one now.

However, today I found out that in all likelihood I will, indeed, lose my hair - just in time for the Quebec conference.  I was going to simply wear head scarves, but thinking about travelling by plane, teaching and trying to feel as though I'm healthy, I decided on the drive home from the hospital today that I am going to invest in a wig for those times when it is important that I look good in public.

I'm not talking about going to the post office to check my mail, or the library to grab some more reading material, but those occassions, like the Quebec conference when I want to look capable, strong and above all, healthy.

My mother has been buying wigs from this company for years so I just happen to have a catalogue on hand as the latest one arrived this week. 

Currently reading Cold Wind by C. J. Box

21 comments:

cate markey said...

Yes Laura - do whatever works for you, especially to feel comfortable while teaching. One of my friends who is in chemo wears cute scarves when people are around, but goes bare (and shaves it to keep it even) when close friends are with her.

As a younger woman I always wanted to shave my head. I think it was a 70's thing or something.

So the pert, platinum model?? Love and healing.

Cate

Sandra Rude said...

Go bare, or go wigged. Either way, we're on your side. Big hug!

schoonoverfarm said...

I recently had a big breast cancer scare and was contemplating losing my long red hair, which is basically a big part of my identity. I was finding hat patterns I could knit. But push never came to shove so I never had to really face my coworkers without hair and am not sure what I would have actually done. So it seems like something you decide at the time for your own comfort level. It seems like your feelings are more important than anyone else's at a moment like this.

TeresaAngelina said...

Yes, do whatever is best for you. When my mother lost her hair to chemo, she decided on a wig in public or when there were visitors whom she was not very close to, and then her lovely re-fuzzing self at other times. The re-fuzzing part is delightful.

Laura said...

Ultimately I don't want the conference registrants to focus on my 'illness' but on my message. :)

cheers,
Laura

Alison said...

I'll be thinking of you today, Laura. I think you are very wise to be considering your own feelings, and the reactions of those around you. And very strong to discuss it, too.

Claudia said...

Laura, you´ll look just lovely with a wig - or without it! It´s just hair, honey; let it go away with your illness. When you finish chemo, the new hair will grow more beautiful than before, because you´ll be renewed - and ready for everything. And don´t you forget - I´m always holding your hand.

Hugs,
Claudia Rizzi

DebbieB said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you today, Laura. Stay strong!

evelynoldroyd said...

Thinking of you today and sending hugs and good wishes. It might be easier to cut the hair really short before it starts falling out which no doubt will be difficult. I cut my hair off to a fuzz twice - and enjoyed the freedom.

Rhonda from Baddeck said...

I agree that looking like your usual self will help others (and you!) focus on things besides your illness/recovery. Do whatever makes you feel better (bubble bath, massage, sleep, wig...). I hope things go well today.

Louisa said...

You are always a beautiful woman, Laura, hair or none. Beauty is more than exterior details. You just do what you have to do to make yourself comfortable. Others will quickly adapt. Big hugs!

Jude said...

Laura, do what feels comfortable for you. I too would feel the way you do.
I agree that anyone taking a workshop or listening to at a talk on weaving will be focused on your passion for weaving.
Healing thoughts & Best Wishes.
Jude

Sally G. Knight said...

I don't think this is about vanity at all. It's just about wanting to be normal. Normal like you usually are. Normal like everyone else is. Do what you want to do for whatever reason you choose. It's all okay. Plus, the decision you make today might be very different from the decision you make a month from now. And that's okay, too. Take it all a day at a time.

Around here, I see more and more patients going with scarves and hats. As awareness grows, so does tolerance and acceptance. Our definition of "normal" is expanding, which, I think, is a very good thing.

terri said...

it's not vanity to want people to focus on your message, not your illness. after all, you are NOT your illness. it's just a sign that you're a fabulous teacher--doing whatever it takes to remove the distractions for your students!

Changepath said...

You have all my good thoughts and best wishes. Be careful when you order your wig that you get one intended for chemo patients. It is my understanding that there is a difference in both the fit and comfort. You are a beautiful person.
Stephanie S

Cheeky Red Head said...
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Cheeky Red Head said...

I have an auto-immune disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis. I'll be on low dose chemo for the rest of my life. While I didn't loose my hair its gotten thinner, breaks, and has become very course. The one thing I can assure you of is that your students will remember your lovely heart and what your teaching them not what you look like. The other thing to remember is your not alone.

Laura said...

Apparently this form of lyhmphoma is considered a chronic disease and will recur at regular intervals so I'm up for more chemo in the future too. C'est la vie!
cheers,
Laura

Lisa Rasche said...

Do you know what type of lymphoma it is? I have follicular lymphoma, and it, too, will recur. When your hair starts falling out, your scalp will be tender and itchy, almost like a sunburn. Buzz your hair off then, otherwise the weight of your hair (even if it's short) will keep your scalp achy and irritated. I never wore a wig, just bandannas and scarves, as the steroids they were also giving me gave me hot flashes like crazy. Keep resting and keep your spirits up!

Laura said...

Small B cell lymphoma. I've got an appointment with my hairdresser for May 13 for a buzz cut, hoping the wig will have arrived by then so she can give it a 'personalized' cut for me. :)
cheers,
Laura

Meg Weaves said...
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