Friday, August 14, 2009

My journey through baldness

I was looking through some old pictures the other night and ran across some from my Year of Cancer. I thought it might be interesting to post the photographic tale of that time...

January 21, 2006
My newly shaved head.
Over my shoulder you can see the wig I bought ahead of time and never wore.

February 5, 2006
The first picture of my bald head.

February 12, 2006
I was still working in this picture and
was picking the boys up from WonderSitter's house.

February 20, 2006
This was taken when I went home for my step-dad's funeral.
I had recently gone on disability and you can see
the affect the steroids are having on my weight...
In a few short months my Mom would also be diagnosed with Breast Cancer.

May 6, 2006
Me and my big steroid Moon-Face went to Vegas
to meet my bff from Maryland.

End of May 2006
My first dinner sitting up at the dinner table after
my single mastectomy.
I had been off chemo for about 6 weeks.
My head was developing a nice 5 o'clock shadow.

August 1, 2006
We took Ben to Disneyland for his 6th birthday.
I was half way through radiation and had been taking Xeloda for 2 months.
The wonderful tan is courtesy of one of Xeloda's side effects: sun sensitivity.
I used a wheelchair in the park as much as possible.
By the end of this weekend my feet had peeled in huge chunks many layers deep
and my underarm was sloughing off it's radiation-damaged skin leaving a
disgusting, green, oozy patch of tissue in it's place.
Daddy-O thinks this was my lowest point physically.

September 13, 2006
I was firmly in what I jokingly called "The Dyke Days".
Everywhere I went the looks of sympathy for a cancer patient
became questionable looks that may or may not have disapproved
of my presumed lifestyle choice. Ha!
My Mom was just entering her Chemo Poster Child phase.

October 3, 2006
Mike and I in Mexico. I felt like I had soooo much hair!
Only 17 more days until I am done with all my chemo!!!

November 23, 2006
Thanksgiving Day
One Month Survivor with many, many reasons to give thanks!

It's hard to believe that was nearly 3 years ago...


Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing the pics. You are a beautiful woman inside & out. I have been following your story for years, since my own breast cancer (4.2 cm, HER-2 positive, mastectomy & chemo, doing fine now). You could write several books IMO!

Best wishes to you and your wonderful family!

sarah said...

Well at the point Mike thought was yur lowest, you look great. How did you manage to do that?! Incredible!

Imstell said...

Thank you both!

Sarah - I think Mike identifies that as my lowest point because that was when it affected HIS life a bit. At first I think he was very embarrassed by the wheelchair at Disneyland. But also because it was the first time I had visible side effects besides baldness. On the other hand... I was feeling pretty good aside from some muscle weakness.

whymommy said...

Imstell, I love this series. I've come back to it twice because I can't decide what to say ... but I guess that's it. I love to see the pictures at ALL stages. It's important.

You rock.

lahdeedah said...

Hey there,

Besides a lovely woman, what I see in these photos is your spirit and your dogged determination to be happy!



AsilomarKnitter said...

A remarkable journey - so glad to have caught up with you again!