Why I Gradually Cut My Hair After Being Diagnosed with Breast Cancer

Lee Hansen By Lee Hansen, 3rd Oct 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/2n1p9klu/
Posted in Wikinut>Health>General Health>Women's Health

I wanted to embrace baldness on my own terms. Even though I didn't have control over my cancer I could do something about my hair.

Hair Loss Was a High Probability

My oncologist was forthright with me about the probability of my hair falling out after the first or second round of chemotherapy. This was based on the potency of the drugs that I would be administered due to the aggressive breast cancer I had been diagnosed with.

Because I have always had a full head of hair, I wanted to take control of my hair "fall-out" without the added stress of waking up to possibly seeing my hair splattered all over my pillow. And so I took matters in my own hand.

A Hairdresser's Cry

My hairdresser of more than 20 years cried when I told her of my decision. After all it was her job to make sure my hair grew and was healthy. Besides being my hairdresser she is my friend. I understood how hard it was for her. After explaining to her she understood where I was coming from. For several weeks in a row she began cutting my hair. It was a look I actually liked. And because it was going into summer, I felt more comfortable with the shorter hairstyle.

And Then it Happened

It wasn't long after that that my hair began falling out when it was touched. While showering one day I noticed large portions of my hair going down the shower drain. Yes I cried briefly but my sister was there to lessen the shock as she held me in her arms and cried along with me. A few days later I went to a professional barber and had the rest of my hair shaved off.

Who is that Looking Back at Me?

Initially I admit it was strange looking at myself in the mirror. The full head of hair I once possessed was completely gone and a bald person was looking right back at me. But when you're fighting for your life things like this became a moot point for me.

When my brother visited to serve me, we had fun comparing our bald heads. My family and friends would not allow me to be defined by my baldness.

The Gold Dome

I proudly wore my "gold dome" as a symbol of what I experienced on my cancer journey. It was the best decision for me. I armed myself with a touch of makeup, a variety of hats, scarves, and earrings to enhance my bald look. While I didn't have a choice with getting cancer, I am glad that I could control issues as it related to my hair falling out. My baldness gave me many opportunities to use it as a teachable moment when people inquired as to what had happened to me.

True Beauty

People often mistake beauty as an outward appearance. I beg to differ. I realized that I was still a person of unique value and extremely loved. True beauty comes from within. And with so many people supporting me, I felt beautiful too.


Credit: Pictures by Lee Hansen and
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dfataustralianaid/10730560814/ on Wikimedia Commons
http://www.marines.mil/unit/mcrc/12mcd/sandiego/PublishingImages/04boots03.jpg on Wikimedia Commons

Tags

Baldness, Cancer, Chemotherapy, Chemotherapy Side Affects, Diseases, Family, Friends, Going Bald Due To Chemotherapy, Hair, Hair Dresser, Hair Loss, Losing Hair

Meet the author

author avatar Lee Hansen
As a breast cancer survivor I have learned to take time to smell the roses in life. I love sharing my passion of reading to children. My pages will be on various topics.

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Comments

author avatar Retired
4th Oct 2014 (#)

Lee, you are such a strong shining soul that no one could see you as anything but incredibly beautiful. Every time I read one of your pieces, my heart expands.

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author avatar Lee Hansen
4th Oct 2014 (#)

Oh Susan that is so sweet. And you dear friend makes my heart expand too.

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
4th Oct 2014 (#)

I happen to LOVE headscarves. Trying to bring them back into popularity here. I think you look amazing -- head full of hair, head without a hair.

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author avatar Lee Hansen
4th Oct 2014 (#)

Phyl I appreciate your kindness and encouragement.

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author avatar Kingwell
5th Oct 2014 (#)

True beauty comes from within and you are a beautiful person. Blessings.

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author avatar Lee Hansen
5th Oct 2014 (#)

Kingwell I appreciate the affirmation.

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author avatar Smileworld
6th Oct 2014 (#)

I definitely agree with Kingwell that beauty comes from within. I admire you, Lee, for being a strong woman and for facing squarely your trial.

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author avatar Lee Hansen
6th Oct 2014 (#)

Thank you Smileworld. It means a lot.

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author avatar Delicia Powers
7th Oct 2014 (#)

Beautiful attitude and lady...Lee somehow your smile even shows up brighter...now that is STYLE emphasized...hugs to you Lee!

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author avatar Lee Hansen
7th Oct 2014 (#)

Thank D. I realize that I do have a lot to smile about. I am so very grateful for the new lease on life I have been granted.

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