As I was styling my hair this morning, fistfuls started appearing in my hands. And so it begins, i thought, now everyone will know. Hair loss is the final frontier of coming out with Cancer, with having to let other people know you’re going through Chemo. As long as you can do your ‘do, no one needs to know. But as soon as you lose your hair, everyone knows.
When you come out, you don’t just do it once then it’s over. You do it over and over and over again to everyone you meet. Whether you’re coming out as gay, as someone who actually likes Spam, or as someone with Cancer, unless you choose to remain totally silent, you have to tell the same story over and over and over.
Cancer sucks, but Chemo is the real bitch slap. The nausea. The bathroom. The fatigue. The heartburn. The rashes. The dehydration. The fucking annoyance of it all. How it takes over your life. How everything is different. Your whole conception of yourself.
Nobody wants to talk about the reality of Cancer and Chemo. Everybody wants to tell you it will pass, you’ll get through it, it’s a blessing in disguise, you’ll come out stronger. They want to tell you what to do and give you unsolicited advice.
When I talk about Cancer I want to hear the truth and I want to speak the truth. I say what I say because I want a record of what’s happening to me at this moment in time, not because I want pity or sympathy or because i’m Whining. (yes, i capitalized Whining on purpose:>)
If anyone doesn’t recognize the first picture above, I’m sorry for you.
The second picture was put on my Facebook page by Sandra Garcia Rivera, a fine poet, and a friend and classmate from Antioch. That look is going to save my bald head and psyche.
Thanks for reading.