Published August 12, 2016 by helentastic67



Have a very bad case of procrastination now! And it’s partly because I just want to write about what’s happening in life now and partly because in order to have any of it make sense you need to know about what happened in the past. And as far as the post, I’m up to telling about some of the “hard parts”! So I guess were going RETROGRADE! Just for a little while!

And I might start by mentioning how important a woman’s hair is to her self-worth and her identity. And I mention this, perhaps (again) because it’s important…

My treatment, literally 20 (?) day’s ended on a Friday. On the weekend my partner (sorry, boyfriend) had his daughter with us and on the Sunday morning I got in the shower to wash my hair, so I could be presentable for an outing. We went to some typical ‘family’ adventure in Carlton and my scalp had been a little itchy around the hairline around the back.

I took my hair down, usually worn in a bun and I had matted bits. I pulled them out and got in the shower. I would normally brush it with conditioner in it. There was a corner part of the bath (shower over bath) where I could sit and as I brushed it, it kept coming out in my hands.

I don’t recall crying that day. I didn’t know how bad it was. I got out of the shower dried, dressed and put my hair up (wet).

Then I looked in the mirror!

No hair Helen

It was bad!

It was so obvious how much hair I’d lost, I had my boyfriend bring me my phone and I rang a friend. An old lady who lived in an old people’s village in the same suburb.

I had waited in the bathroom not wanting to scare my boyfriend’s daughter as she was about 4 years old!

I also didn’t know how to fashion/style the scarf, so she helped me with that also.

We went out and someone’s young daughter was looking at me oddly. I felt very self-conscious and I felt a little like the young girl thought I was a Muslim woman. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that!)

The Monday morning, I washed my hair again and this time I did cry. I also had the time to cry as well. And I got how Samantha from (SATC) had felt!

I wept!

That day, I texted my boyfriend and said simply ‘Hey Honey, can you buzz my hair off tonight?’ to which he simply replied ‘sure’ or ‘yes’ or whatever! And that is how I came to lean forward over the bathroom sink about once a month for six months until it started to grow back evenly.

When we had this routine our conversations went something like this;

Keeping in mind my boyfriend wore his hair as a Number one and was from the States and yet to get his permanent residency.

‘I wonder where the local recruitment office is’

To which I would answer;

They will take you before they take me!’

Oh, how we laughed!

What follows is a series of photos of my hair, or lack of and stages of it growing back.

I had pretty much stuck to the same hairstyle since I grew my hair out at about 16, so I really never thought to keep it short.

My bun and long hair had been my style ever since. I have curlier hair when it’s short and that translates to I hate curls!

Now about 8 years later I’m back to a once yearly haircut even if it means I have 4 inches off. I’m OK with that. Its reasonable low maintenance and I wash it on a Monday and Friday, my carers brushing it for me as I stand in the shower then they put it up for me. Sunday and Thursday being my messy hair days.

There are short bits around my temple and the back that drives me crazy another reason I don’t think short hair is for me…

Bad hair day

My anxiety would make me play with it a lot and I don’t need that. So, I figure.

Anyway, that’s enough about hair because when I complained about it to my nurse where I had my treatment she told me not to complain as I was ‘Lucky to have hair!’

I just wish I’d been told to get some hats! I was given a voucher of $50 for a wig and by the time that happened some of the side effects had kicked in and I didn’t have 2 working arms to put on a wig… If anyone has ever brought a wig or gone shopping for one, they would also tell you $50 is not going to help!

When I had no hair I really noticed old men sporting the comb-over hairdo! They really seemed to be more noticeable then. I wanted to go stand next to them and take off my hat and tell them;


‘Let it go! It’s gone! The fights over!’

2 comments on “Retrograde

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