I’ve been really busy lately. With what, you ask?
I’ve been throwing myself one hell of a pity party. RSPVP’s were not required because, though we all like parties, this was not one you would have wanted to attend. Engraved invitations didn’t go out, hell, I couldn’t have even managed an e-vite.
I was on a high after my 5 yr anniversary post. The love and support lifted me and held me up for 3 or 4 days. Then my scan came and my fear of bad results took over. I posted a little, trying to make light of it and appear grateful for the good results. I held my head high and typed with fake enthusiasm.
I pretended to be strong and joked about my doctor’s office meltdown.
But I lied. It wasn’t joke worthy. It hurts to lose it even before getting the results. It’s hard not to be strong in the face of it all. To admit I’m weak and tired and really really sad.
I’ve been walking in a dark cloud. I’ve struggled daily to hold back tears every time I glance in the mirror and see my lack of hair and overly thin face. I look like a cancer patient.
I’ve had friends make suggestions about what can be done with my hair. It’s made it worse. I had another friend comment to my kids that she just “had to tease their mom about her hair”. But why? Why did she have to tease me? How does this help?
I knew my identity was tied to my copious amounts of red hair. Honestly, I’ve had very few bad hair days in my life and I do appreciate that. Up until now.
I’ve never been the pretty one but I had great hair. Through my freakishly tall, bad skin, questionable choice of band instruments days, I had the kind of hair people told me they envied. It made me walk a little taller. But honestly, how ridiculous is it to not know who I am now that it’s gone?
Someone recently asked where D2 got her gorgeous long red hair. It killed me. Absolutely broke my heart into tiny pieces.
How do I justify feeling sorry for myself over such a petty minor thing?
Should I admit how superficial I am?
Should I be embarrassed to admit how much I struggle when I’m supposed to be grateful for 5 extra years?
I guess I bare it here and hope nobody reads it. This is my therapy.
This is where I confess that I fear I won’t live long enough to see it long again. In the greater scheme of things that shouldn’t matter. But it does.
It matters to me very much.
I had a friend suggest I cut it shorter. She might be right but I can’t do it. My hair stylist knows that – she wouldn’t do it if I asked. She shaved my neck at my last appointment. It WON’T be shorter than that. She’s been through cancer treatments herself, so she knows and appreciates how much the loss of the smallest things add to the mourning of life before cancer. How my femininity is tied to my hair.
So how do I find my way out of the dark cloud of a lost identity and the exhaustion of a year of daily treatment that wears me out in every way? When does the mourning end? What’s next? Do I have the strength for another 5 years?
I don’t know.
I’m trying and SG is trying to help. He tells me I’m beautiful to him but I don’t believe him. He’s not above lying to me to try to make me feel better. I appreciate that and I’m sure I don’t want him to tell me the truth anyway.
I don’t want to be told to get a wig now that it’s just starting to come back. That’s what my mom does. She does it with love – her way of trying to help me feel better about myself. But somehow my warped brain sees it as a reminder that the way I look now isn’t good enough. Not to her but to me.
And yes, I am feeling horribly sorry for myself when I know how much worse others have it. But why do I have to compare my feelings to that? Why can’t I just allow myself some time to wallow as long as I snap out of it by the time the girls get home from school?
I’ll get through it. I’ll contain it to after hours, after bedtime. I will get through it but not yet.
Not right now. Right now I’m sad and exhausted and out of words.