Looking a lot less like Roseanne Roseannadanna

I thought I was past the point where my hair would start to fall out. Then on Friday morning I took my bun down for a minute and pulled my hand through my hair and found myself holding a lot more hair in my hand afterwards than I expected, a lot more.  A few more times of running my hand over the pony tail – same result. So, I knew my hair would at least be thinning.

Friday night at home I realized I hadn’t checked again. Bun down, fingers threw my hair, and pretty big sections of hair, not exactly sections but thicker than strands came out. And over and over again, basically every time I did it. I checked again before I went to bed, same thing. However, I have soooooo much hair it wasn’t really making a difference in how it looked.

I cried a little. Not scared or angry, just sort of saying goodbye to my hair. At half an inch a month it will take a very long time to get my hair to be long again, at least two years. During the day today my hair has gotten shorter and shorter (the long hairs seem to be in the lead in departing my head) and thinner and thinner. Before this day is out I am going to shave my head. I have my wig and now two buffs. So I am as prepared as I can be.

This also makes me feel more like a cancer patient. I am often told by nurses and doctors how good I look. And for the most part I feel really good too. But, this is the beginning of everything being quite a bit different. I will look different. When I have the stem cell transplant I likely won’t feel that well. And all the restrictions post-transplant will change just about everything I do.

F#ck cancer.

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I never thought I’d be writing a blog, and certainly not one that is all about me, and yet, here I am. For me life has always been interesting, not mundane, not always exciting per se, but hardly ever the norm. When I say “It’s always something…” I don’t hear it as my life is a mess, it;s always something. It’s more of life is challenging and evolving and messy and inspiring and wondrous, it’s always something. I grew up in suburbia, buy my grandfather was the head of the Communist Party in the U.S. I was raised keeping that a secret, so that was something. I am tall, always have been, really tall (6’1″), I was taller than every human being in my elementary school when I was in 6th grade, that is still something. My parents divorced in my teens. I got a full basketball scholarship to Duke University. I married my high school basketball coach, 18 years my senior. I raised a stepson. I had two amazing kids of my own. We had a multicultural household, secular christian (I guess that’s what I would call it, you know Santa and the Easter Bunny) and Judaism, I used to say if it was a holiday – we celebrated it! We were uber involved in our community, mostly through youth athletics, coaching, managing and spectating. Our kids grew up, I started a photography business on the side (I hope to share some photos here) and we planned to travel a bit together, went to Portugal for our 25th anniversary and then my husband was diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer, initially they gave him 5 years, but he only survived for a little over two. I was going to say lived, but really, it was more like surviving. That, indeed, was something. I became a widow at 49. It was the worst thing that ever happened to me. But, then it was something in another way. I relearned who I was. You don’t realize how much of you becomes a combination of you and another person in a relationship. And not in a bad way, it is essential, and you don’t lose yourself, you just evolve. And I found myself suddenly alone, and learning about myself and who I had become over the years, what was just me, and what was part of who we were together. Which in retrospect, was probably hardest on those around me who had gotten used to the old me, or never even knew the original me. A year later I found love again. Sold my home of 31 years and moved closer to work. I became more fit, ate more healthfully and was amazed that I could be happy, truly happy, in the wake, no not wake, but the shadow of such profound grief. And that is truly something, something amazing and unexpected. And then, through some routine blood work in April 2014, and a visit to a hematologist and bone marrow biopsy in May, I was diagnosed with multiple myeloma. And so, yes, for me right now it’s multiple myeloma, but that is not all, there are still highs and joys, and the mundane and the rest, but something like cancer does cast a pretty long shadow.

6 thoughts on “Looking a lot less like Roseanne Roseannadanna”

  1. I remember when you were a baby with NO hair for a long time.. And you were adorable…not great comfort now ! I am sure but at least your head has a nicely sculptured roundness. People have called me flathead but I am not sure that they are referring to hair! I love you bushels! Rickie

    Sent from my iPad


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sounds like the hair may be there to stay. If not, I have been known to do a mean shaved head. xoxoxoxox


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