Saturday, July 11, 2015

Chemo And Hair Loss

One word....Chemo, the toughest treatment any cancer patient will undergo.

It didn't take long after I was diagnosed that I began my chemo treatment. Although I would like to believe I saw past losing my hair, it was always on my mind. I did some research and came across Penguin Caps, the cap that prevents hair loss while receiving chemotherapy. I opted to buy 6 of them, I did everything I could to keep my hair for as long as I could. 

I looked very silly on my first treatment with my cap on. Side note: We took a big cooler with all 6 caps and a block of dry ice to keep them frozen.

One week after my first treatment I began to feel the side effects. I became weak and would not eat for weeks at a time. Sores appeared all over my body and stung, my nails turned black and brittle and my skin was super dry. I also had the typical nausea, diarrhea, and shortness of breathe. My biggest accomplishment was taking a shower, and even then I didn't have the strength to do it every day. My bones would hurt, especially my knees; I could not stand for very long. What was unexpected was to enter into pre-menopause, my menstrual period stopped and the hot flashes started. To this day, 8 months later, I'm still dealing with menopause at age 25. Chemotherapy really took a toll on me. 

My hair fell off 2 weeks after my first chemo session, it was my biggest nightmare. My husband and I would wake up in pools of hair. My hair was everywhere, all over our sheets, all over the floor, all over our clothes. I would run my hands through my hair and huge handfuls would fall off. I would cry every time I showered, I couldn't escape it. As vain as it sounds, it hurt so much to see my hair go. This only meant that I REALLY DID have cancer and it was determined to kill me. I was ready to fight back. 

4 months later I finished chemo, I was so excited to finally be done! I was on a very strict diet during the treatment and all I asked for was a mango cake from Porto's to celebrate. My awesome husband made my wish come true. 

Chemo is rough, it is challenging, it is painful; but I conquered. I gave it my all and fought as hard as I could. Cancer took my hair but it did NOT take my life. 

In the words of my wise husband;

"Suck It Cancer!"