So I finally got up the nerve to wash my hair today. I have followed the directions and have not washed since last Saturday. Since some of the shedding started on Wednesday when I had my second chemo, I was petrified to see what would happen when I washed my hair (since it has still been shedding since Wednesday).
I started to gently comb my hair from the bottom and hold the top so I would not pull on it. I figured that if I combed it a little before it would be less tangled during washing. The combing went fine and not much hair came out - maybe a little more than normal but not bad. Then I began to wet my hair with the cool water and started seeing hairs drop. I continued along slowly and carefully bent over the very large and oh so very white tub (making every hair stand out like a sore thumb) and watched each hair fall....many hairs fall. I washed and conditioned a little and rinsed...more hair. It has been horrible all morning. I just looked in the mirror and tears began to fall.
I know the "shedding" is normal with doing the cold caps, but I kept having hope maybe it would not happen at all since it has been over 3 weeks since my first chemo and there had been no hair loss. Ugh. I just sat there with wet hair....letting it hang and dry. I was too afraid to touch it. It doesn't look any different to me (other than not dried and styled like I would). I did not notice any bald spots or clumps coming out which is good news, but I can't get the image of all that hair coming out today in the tub! This is the first time I really feel a strong panicked feeling about my hair since starting this process. I have been positive and have said over and over again that it will work and I will keep my hair. I am starting to just get a bit nervous now.
Others that have done the cold caps have experienced the same exact shedding and worries and still went through chemo and finished with hair. I have to try to hold on to that and their words of wisdom and experience that this will be OK. I guess I have just tried to be so positive and have not let a negative thought enter my mind in the past few weeks since starting chemo it is just hitting me today. I hate breast cancer.
I have to find a way to put this into some kind of perspective. Normally I would wash my hair daily. I wonder how much hair I would lose on a daily basis doing that? I have not washed my hair in an entire week (following the protocol for Cold Caps) and had some shedding in the past few days. I wonder if I shed more because it was all at once (a week's worth of shed without washing)? Let's face it, I have been really gentle with my hair and have barely even combed it much in the past week. That plus the chemo shed may make this normal for cold caps. I sure hope so. I just hope the shedding period stops soon. I don't know what will happen if this continues for a few more days. That will put me over the edge for sure!
For now it looks normal (other than not styled my normal way) and does not look thin. I will try to remember that today. I will tell myself that over and over again today.
As far as post chemo this week, I am doing better than I thought. I had chemo on Wednesday and felt fine on Thursday and Friday. I exercised well both days too which felt good. Yesterday in the afternoon I started feeling a little foggy in the head like last time and started with some body aches. I have been taking Aleve and Claritin this time around to help with side effects and I do feel like the side effects are a bit less than last time which is good news. I do have a little soreness in my neck, base of skull, ribs and jaw, but it is minimal and definitely less than last time. I slept OK last night - not great but better than some nights. I have been really hungry the past two days. All I want is carbs.....lots of them too! I have been trying to focus on drinking a lot of water to flush the chemo out of my body. I just hope the bone pain does not hit again this time around. We will see.
I am a wife, a mom, a sister, a daughter, a neice, an aunt and a friend. I never thought I would hear the words "It's not good. There are cancer cells". December 8, 2010 changed my life forever. This is my scary, long, enlightening journey through breast cancer. I hope that my words help others facing a similar situation or those that love someone going through breast cancer. I don't know where the road in front of me leads, but I know that Breast Cancer won't define me.
"Don't spend time worrying about how you are going to die. Worry about how you are going to live today"
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Labels: Breast Cancer, Hair
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