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Had to shave my head today

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

15 days out from first chemo and when I got out of shower today my hair was just falling out in huge clumps. I though I was ready or this
I had already cut my hair super short last week in anticipation of this day. But I was so not ready! Thank God my husband was off from work
Today to comfort me, he shaved my head for me and told me how beautiful I looked. This to me is the worst part of chemo. I can deal with the bone pain
And the stomach cramps even the nausea but losing my hair has to be one of the worst part of having breast cancer.
All you ladies out there who have gone through this and those who soon will go through this I give you a lot of credit. You are all incredibly
Strong and have much courage. You are all my inspiration !
Thanks :)

lynn1950's picture
lynn1950
Posts: 2567
Joined: Jun 2008

Hugs to you. It's another step on the way to healing.

CypressCynthia's picture
CypressCynthia
Posts: 3873
Joined: Oct 2009

I never thought I was a vain person, but I remember vividly when my hair fell out in clumps. I cried my eyes out.

The great news is that, after 25 years, I am still here! And my hair did come back just fine. Hang in there! Big hugs.

DebbyM's picture
DebbyM
Posts: 3295
Joined: Oct 2009

Sending lots of hugs!

ksf56's picture
ksf56
Posts: 203
Joined: Apr 2012

I felt much the same - I think I cried more about my hair than the rest of the crap I went through. Try to visualize that your hair falling out is a sign that the chemo is working. It was about the only thing that was a little comforting to me. I was always the true blonde girl in the crowd - it was my one thing that seemed to make me - me. I thought. Boy, was it easier to get ready to go everywhere though - no hair prep!

I'm sorry you're going through this but you are not alone and most of us know how tramatic hair loss is. It does grow back and who knows, you might like it better than before. I do.

Arms are around you!
Karen

47ronin
Posts: 16
Joined: Aug 2012

I cried too when my hair came out 13 days after my 1st chemo this June. It's coming back slowly, but I really miss it. I didn't think I was vain either, but this is hard. You know those dogs who come back from the vet with the big ridiculous cone around their necks who look really embarrassed? That's what I feel like.

One good thing is that I will never complain about my hair again when it comes back - no crap about it being too plain or too curly or anything. And I will be so thrilled to not have to draw on eyebrows because I look like Divine in Pink flamingos - not a good look for a middle-aged nurse.

camul's picture
camul
Posts: 2006
Joined: Dec 2010

I was being transferred out of state, it was 14 days from my first treatment and I was working with a realtor in Boise. The wind was blowing really hard, and my hair started blowing out. I didn't realize it was coming out until he started hemming and hawing, I asked if he was ok. My son who was in Boise to help me find a place said mom, your hair is blowing away with the wind. Told the realtor I had started chemo.

Quit looking for the day, stopped at the grocery store, bought a bic, went to dinner. Got back to the Double Tree and I went to sleep. Woke up with a pillow full of hair, showered and most of the rest fell out. Got dressed, woke my son and he shaved the 5 small areas that still had hair, put on a ball cap, rented an apartment.

Didn't hit me until I was driving back to Salt Lake that night and realized that everyone would know the next day when I went to work that I have cancer. Only 3 of my 200+ knew. Was so upset, but couldn't react in front of my boys. They were so afraid I was going to die, so I acted like the whole cancer thing was not a big deal.

trsmith0104
Posts: 35
Joined: Jul 2012

Carol, I'm not laughing at you, but that was a FUNNY post. I too will be receiving chemo. I start on October 5th. I get my port put in next Friday. All too soon, my fun will begin as well :)

rallendorfer
Posts: 245
Joined: May 2012

And now you got through it. I am so glad that your husband was there to comfort you! You have made it through one chemo and now the emotionally devastating loss of your hair. How many treatments are you facing? what drugs?

I cried about the hair too. It was very hard, since it represents so much of who we are. But, on the plus side, I have a cute wig and it looks better than my own hair ever did. It is very easy to put on and looks great, so I am hoping that you have a nice wig on the side too.

Hugs,
Rebecca

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Hi Rebecca,
I have five more runs of chemo to go with taxore and cytoxan. Than 35 rounds of radiation.
I go this Thursday the 27th for round two that happens to be he day of my daughters 9th birthday
So feeling a little guilty about that going to celebrate it a day earlier for her though.
I got a really nice wig that looks so much like my hair did before I started cutting it and I also
Got a few really cute chemo scarfs to wear. Just so much harder than I expected guess no
Matter how much you tell yourself you can handle it until it happens you never know.
Are you still in treatment?
Hugs Christine

rallendorfer
Posts: 245
Joined: May 2012

I was able to only make it through 6 rounds of the scheduled 8 of chemo. The first 4 were A/C and the last 2 were Taxotere. I was not able to do it anymore. The BS did the tests and decided to go ahead with the removal of the 3 lumps since they had shrunk considerably from the chemo. I am recovering now, and the surgeon did a great job...just heard on Thursday evening from the doctor that pathology reports showed clear margins, so no more surgery, yah! Now, I will meet the Radiologist and go through radiation for several weeks. (Don't know yet how many.)

But the chemo did its work, and I will always try to cheer on the ones who are going through it.

We are here for you,
Rebecca

mardibra
Posts: 10
Joined: Sep 2012

My name is Christine and my birthday was 9/17! I'm taking that as a good sign for you.

I vividly remember the day I shaved my head. December 16, 2011. It sucked but it's now grown in nicely. One more week of my head rat and then I'm going topless!

It will get better...you will get through it.

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Hi Christine and happy belated birthday!
How soon after you stopped treatment did your head start growing back?

mardibra
Posts: 10
Joined: Sep 2012

It started growing back pretty quickly. I had hair after one month but it was spotty. It did not grow back evenly. So, I couldn't go without a wig (at least I didn't think I could) until late july. Even in July, I would only go topless on the weekends while amongst friends. I finished chemo in march so it was a good few months. So, it will be 7 months for me in another week or so. I'm finally ready to ditch the wig full time. You should take pictures once a week. That will help you see the progress.

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

I actually have been taking pictures with each stage of haircuts. I use to have really long hair and starting cutting it shorter before chemo
I heard that after chemo your hair comes back really curly is that true?

mardibra
Posts: 10
Joined: Sep 2012

Mine is super curly in the back. Sides and top are ok for the moment.

Wendy Joy
Posts: 51
Joined: Jan 2012

My chemo ended April 20th and now my hair is really cute and super curly!!! I never had curly hair in my life. I wear a head band in it. It changes every week. Last week I was saying I was a chia-head. Now I actually like my hair. It is the best feeling to get hair again and the curls feel like a little, fun gift for going through it all.

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Your post made me smile. I heard that about chemo hair comes back curly. I had really curly hair as a kid and wonder if it will come in straight now or curly lol
Thanks :)

Fairemewell
Posts: 28
Joined: Jul 2012

Hang in there!
My hair started falling out about one week after my first chemo session. I had already had a hair appointment two days after the first session and like you I had my hair cut short in anticipation of the falling out.
I choose to view the no-hair situation as a great excuse to purchase some new hats. I love hats and at my wife's and a co-workers suggestion we implemented "Fun Hat Friday" unofficially of course, at my work.

I did not loose all my hair but with it shaved to the shortest setting, I was for all practical purposes bald. I must admit I was surprised that my head was not nearly as badly shaped as I had anticipated.
I also had something to compare to as my sister had breast cancer two years ago and she had the cutest, nicest shaped bald head I had ever seen. (thank goodness she is doing very well now.)
Anyway, my hair decided to start growing back in before I was done with the third chemo session. I was going every three weeks with that Chemo. I am still doing chemo but a different one and this time I am going weekly. My hair is slowly growing back in, it is about 3/8 inch and the bright straw-blonde color it was when I was a young child.

Most of my friends and family who have gone through this have had their hair come back softer and with more body. I hope this is the case for you as well.

jnl's picture
jnl
Posts: 3873
Joined: May 2009

I never went thru this as I never had chemo. I just want you to know that my heart goes out to you as I can imagine how hard this must be. I bet you are still gorgeous!

Leeza

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Thank you, you put a much needed smile on my face today.
I am glad that you didn't need chemo, I hope you are doing well
Hugs Christine

jnl's picture
jnl
Posts: 3873
Joined: May 2009

Yes, I am doing well. Thanks Christine! I know I read on your other post about your 3rd chemo, and, I am wishing you well with it today. The finish line is close!

Hugs, Leeza

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Rebecca so glad to hear that your margins were clear and you are done with surgery yeah! You are in the final stretch
That must feel go. I know that when I was first diagnosed thef road ahead looked so long and far away.
Good luck with radiation that was be a breezed compare to what you have already gone through.
Keep me posted on how you are doing
Hugs Christine

llbblessed
Posts: 2
Joined: Sep 2012

I cut my hair down on Sept 11th, 2012. Since then more of my hair has come out but now I have some spots that are completely bald; and some spots with some hair. It's still coming out but I really want to go bald altogether!!!! I don't know the best way to do so. Do I use shaving cream, Nair, etc. Can someone help?

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

I was worring the same thing. I am down to stubble on my head my husband used his electric razor but not sure if I should just wait it out or
Shave it the Reston the was.ni dont think nar would be a good idea you but get a reaction from it due to the chemo drugs already
In your system. My brother shaved his head in support of me and uses shaving cream but I know he cuts his head a lot.
If I figure it out I will let u know. Good luck
Hugs Christine

Jean 0609's picture
Jean 0609
Posts: 2307
Joined: Jun 2010

I was more upset about losing my hair than my boob. Just remember, it might be hard at first, but it will grow back. Can't promise how it will grow back though. I really liked my hair when it started growing back. It was short and sassy. Got a lot of compliments. Plus it was so much easier to take care of. Hang in there.

xxxx,
Jean

DianeBC's picture
DianeBC
Posts: 3888
Joined: Jun 2009

Prayers and hugs for you!

disneyfan2008
Posts: 5259
Joined: Oct 2010

So sorry..I can only imagine since I had ONLY radiation/surgery! Like many things you know will happen, think ok with it until reality.

I wish you the best...!

Denise

motherof6blessedchildren's picture
motherof6blesse...
Posts: 3
Joined: Sep 2012

My heart goes out to you as well! I had just cut my hair short after having long hair since high school; it was the worst experience thus far with the exception of losing my oldest son. I was semi prepared but not fully and I didn't want my husband to see me like that; because we were just married 4 months prior to being diagnosed. We've been together almost 2 years but I too, had been out riding on the motorcycle all day with him, to come home to a hat full of hair. Jumped in the shower and it was coming out by the handfuls. He was fast asleep so i scurried all night not wanting to wake him up; made myself sick for nothing...He shaved it before we had to leave that next morning and reminding me i looked beautiful!! Men like that are rare to find, and I feel and pray for each and everyone of you out there suffering this aweful disease...<3 hugs

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

This disease is awful. I pray for a cure and wish they would come up with something, anything new to stop it.

Praying for all of you too that are going thru chemo now,

Noel

sea60's picture
sea60
Posts: 2601
Joined: May 2010

I know it's so hard. I too cut my hair and was mentally prepared...but it's just so hard to accept. I think for me, seeing my hair fall made my cancer so much more real. From surreal to stark reality.

I was strong until that day. My son was there and I couldn't muster the strength to be strong so I cried in his arms.

At the end of this October, it will be 7 years since that time. You're hair will grow back. And you'll be a much more stronger woman with much more gratitude.

Blessings and strength to you,

Sylvia

desertgirl947's picture
desertgirl947
Posts: 402
Joined: Oct 2012

I think we all dread that. I remember when my oncologist told me that the pathology reports indicated that surgery and a pill were not going to be adequate, I needeed chemo and radiation. Of course, he told me some of what I could expect, as chemo was going to start two weeks after our meeting.

I was more unsettled at the prospect of losing my hair than of any other side effect of chemo. I was told that my hair could start to fall out around my second infusion. It did.
I already had a few hats and a wig handy, as I ordered those as soon as I knew I was getting chemo.

My husband and I were going to be going to a family reunion at this time. I decided the day before we left that since I was shedding so badly, I would have my friend Becky come over and give me a buzz cut, close to my head. She and another of my friends were there at the time told me I have a nice-looking head. I said that at this point, I looked like an Olympic wrestler.

This was not an easy thing to do, but I had no control about my hair -- and I knew it. I told myself to just deal with it. I did. Around the house I went hatless/hairless, but when I was out, I grabbed something to cover my head. I wanted to think that those kept people from "knowing." I did not want anyone to ask me questions or feel sorry for me. Losing my hair meant that what I viewed as a private battle now was public. I was not in control of who could guess my lot.

At the reunion, my family all had hats/wigs they brought with them, and we had a family picture taken while we had our heads covered. None of them lives near me, and so this was a way they could show their love and support.

I made it through the AC portion of my treatment and then bristles grew back on my head. I thought it meant my hair would begin to return, and early. Wrong. The bristles stayed, and nothing else grew. I made it through the AC and I still had eyebrows and eyelashes. I thought that I wasn't going to lose those afterall. WRONG! Soon after I started the Taxol, I lost my eyebrows, eyelashes, and nose hairs. I had to remind myself again, JUST DEAL WITH IT!

I finished chemo in mid-July. Here it is October. My eyebrows, eyelashes, and nose hairs came back quickly. My head hair started out slow, but sudden picked up the pace. Now I am at the point where I am deciding whether or not to give up the wig and hats.

kacee999
Posts: 109
Joined: Oct 2012

I lost mine about day 14 and my husband shaved it too. My BIGGEST fear through it all was that I'd have some weird shaped head to deal with. No so. Very nice and round. I have to tell you, not having hair for 5 months was INVIGORATING!!!!!!!! I hate to admit it, but I LOVED it! I began by wearing long dangly earrings all the time. It's a great look. I invested in tons of fashion scarves and learned how to tie them many ways. You can also wear MORE makeup. In this day and age, bald on a female is not the SHOCK it was 20 years ago (thank you Sinead O'Connor!). My hair has been growing back for about 3 months now, and I really don't know what to do with it. I have chemo-curl, so it's basically just a little wavy curly mess. I let it do it's own thing...it's still very short...and continnue to wear lots of dangly earrings! AND I get MANY compliments!

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Now that I am bald I find getting ready in the morning is much quicker I guess that is one good thing lol
Thanks all for your support
Hugs Christine

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

You have such a great attitude Christine! You are truly an inspiration!

Hugs, Noel

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Thanks Noel that is so sweet I think of you of you as my inspiration too!
Hugs Christine

kacee999
Posts: 109
Joined: Oct 2012

I lost mine about day 14 and my husband shaved it too. My BIGGEST fear through it all was that I'd have some weird shaped head to deal with. No so. Very nice and round. I have to tell you, not having hair for 5 months was INVIGORATING!!!!!!!! I hate to admit it, but I LOVED it! I began by wearing long dangly earrings all the time. It's a great look. I invested in tons of fashion scarves and learned how to tie them many ways. You can also wear MORE makeup. In this day and age, bald on a female is not the SHOCK it was 20 years ago (thank you Sinead O'Connor!). My hair has been growing back for about 3 months now, and I really don't know what to do with it. I have chemo-curl, so it's basically just a little wavy curly mess. I let it do it's own thing...it's still very short...and continnue to wear lots of dangly earrings!

kacee999
Posts: 109
Joined: Oct 2012

I lost mine about day 14 and my husband shaved it too. My BIGGEST fear through it all was that I'd have some weird shaped head to deal with. No so. Very nice and round. I have to tell you, not having hair for 5 months was INVIGORATING!!!!!!!! I hate to admit it, but I LOVED it! I began by wearing long dangly earrings all the time. It's a great look. I invested in tons of fashion scarves and learned how to tie them many ways. You can also wear MORE makeup. In this day and age, bald on a female is not the SHOCK it was 20 years ago (thank you Sinead O'Connor!). My hair has been growing back for about 3 months now, and I really don't know what to do with it. I have chemo-curl, so it's basically just a little wavy curly mess. I let it do it's own thing...it's still very short...and continnue to wear lots of dangly earrings!

kacee999
Posts: 109
Joined: Oct 2012

My computer burped so this came in multiples. My bad.

kacee999
Posts: 109
Joined: Oct 2012

My husband also shaved my head 14 days out. My ONLY fear was that I would discover I had an odd shaped head and be embarassed. Not so! It's round a pretty symetrical, so I was ecstatic!!! I actually reveled in my baldness. I got TONS of scarves from online and learned how to tie them many different ways (you can learn a lot from the middle eastern women who wear headscarves on a permanent basis!). I invested in a BUNCH of long dangly earrings. After a while I quite wearing scarves except in public. My husband commented after a few weeks (of calling me "Lex Luthor" and "old baldie") that he actually LIKED the look! You gotta work with it. Increase the makeup, go for the BIG earrings, have a ball with scarves! I just passed on my veritable trunk of scarves to a lady who was just diagnosed and preparing to go through chemo too. She was thrilled with them.

Oops...sorry, didn't realize I had already replied above...my bad

Rosemarie810
Posts: 3
Joined: Apr 2010

My hair started coming out in clumps the night before my second chemo. So my niece was nice enough to come over to shave my hair and her and my daughter tought it was funny when they posted a picture of me with a mohawk on FB, she finished shaving it after that. Like you I cut my hair really short, but losing it didn't bother me as much. I looked in the mirror one afternoon halfway through my chemo and found that my eyebrows were gone that hit me. Treatment has ended and it is now 3 weeks later and my hair is coming back in. So there is a bright spot.

madsters1
Posts: 120
Joined: Oct 2011

Dear Ctine,
Wanna just be there and give you big,hug. I came home from church on Nov 20th of last year and pulled all of the hair out of my head! I freaked out!! It was devastating for me. Some braver than I seem to just "troop" through it. Not me...

So you are not alone. Most find losing their hair as the worst part of breast cancer. God says a womans hair is her glory. So, we lose alot. I tried a wig, but the back of my head is somewhat flat and it crept up to the point that I had panick attacks thinking it was going to fly off!! I found cute scarves and matching ball caps with cute earrings of course, worked better for me.
I remember reading other peoples posts about long ago when they lost their hair and thinking I'll never get there. It's actually the longest lasting "side effect". So, my dear friend, I'm here to encourage you that "this too shall pass". My hair began to grow eeever so slowly in late Feb '12. I now have "normal" hair!!! Yay!! It's a bit like having a baby, it hurts like nothing else has ever hurt, but the painful memort DOES fade. God bless you.

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Thank you so much for your understanding and support. I am now getting use to my new look but like you I hate wearing my wig. I feel very unlike me and very self conscience when I wear it. I find myself more a peace with it all in the preset head scarfs I bought.
My eyebrows are starting to thin out now and that worries me alittle but I am trying to take it day by day.
Hope you are doing well
Hugs Christine

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

Christine, I bet you look amazing in your scarfs!

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