Mike and I joke that buying a house will just add a boat load of stress to an already stressful time. It probably will, but it will probably also be an enormous joy.
We have been saving like mad and all we’ve wanted is our own home. Even more so now, so that I can have a private oasis, a hiding place. I’m dreading the degradation of my appearance in our impersonal apartment complex. I imagine the tween girls across the hall (okay, they’re like 20, but they act strangely juvenile) growing more and more confused by me looking so different day to day. They’ll wonder, Is that lady’s husband a rampant philanderer?
I’ll find a note under the door one day. “Hi Nikole,” (I imagine they can’t spell, or know what philanderer means), "We saw a blonde lady with bad highlights come out of your apartment yesterday and we’re sorry to tell you this but..."
This is all conjecture of course, I still have my hair. But it’s coming. I’ve scoured my cancer book library, plus the Internet, for the “signs” of hair loss and this seems to be it. It feels as if I’ve been wearing a hat for a month and I just took it off, that’s how sensitive my scalp has become. And it's itchy; it feels like I have lice jumping around in there, like in 2nd grade when I literally saw a louse jump from my friends head onto mine, and then she denied it, and I was like, “I just SAW it!” And then we got into a fight. And then we both clearly had lice.
Fun fact about why you lose your hair: The hair follicles are made up of some of the fastest growing cells in the body. So with chemo targeting fast-growing cells (healthy and unhealthy), hair is one of the first things to go.
Every morning after I wake up I check my pillow. Wait, that’s a lie - I get up normally, then rush back to the bed and check because there is a split second of time when I wake up that I forget I have cancer. Anyway, I check and there’s nothing, then I breathe out.
When do I take the plunge and buzz it? I wonder. "You’ll know," people have told me with a grave nod. “You’ll know." I understand the need to get ahead of it; I do. But God. When? Just give me a date.
Someone asked if I’ve ever heard of those cold cap things - these freezing cold helmet-like numbers that cost thousands of dollars and supposedly prevent hair loss from chemo. You wear them in the chemo chair, looking not only like a cancer patient but I imagine a very disturbed human, feeling like you’re freezing to death on top of the nausea, anxiety, and burning veins that are being pumped with steroids and poison.
So yes, as glorious as that sounds, I have heard of them, and I even considered them for .2 seconds because if you can’t tell I’m FREAKING OUT over losing my hair. Then I read about that since essentially the caps cut off access for the chemo to reach hair follicles- that means if there are tiny, elusive, as-yet-to-be-identified cancer cells frolicking around in there, there's a possibility they'll enjoy a free pass to roam and divide inside your dome piece and set up shop. No thank you. Same goes for “saving my nipple.” So you’re saying a few Bad Larrys could be lurking under the tissue of the nip? Yeah - again, no thank you. Take it. Take it all!
I don’t know the point of this post other than to once again go on and on about being bald again, but sorry. Gotta get it out.
I have a book my friend gave me called, “Bald is Better with Earrings.” It’s an awesome book, and I think it’s true. I’ve bought about 6 pairs. I haven’t worn earrings in years. The hole was still open, incredibly. So that’s in the game plan. Earrings. And with any luck, after a long, disappointing house search, having the sale of this house go through (yay!) so as to not scare the tweens across the hall. And silver lining to all of this! No lice.