Shauna Wears Pink

I will never forget the day my doctor uttered those horrifying words “I am sorry to tell you, but that is a cancer tumor that you have in your left breast”. I was 33 years old, and my life changed forever. I invite you to read my story, learn from it and hopefully be inspired to reach out to other young women living with and beyond breast cancer.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Who needs hair anyway!

My doctor said it would happen, but I lived in denial for at least 10 days. I thought…”it won’t happen to me.” I will be that one person that does not lose their hair from chemotherapy. But it did happen just as predicted by my oncologist exactly 14 days after my first chemotherapy treatment. When I brushed my hair on day 12 after my first treatment, long strands began to come out. The next day even more came out in my brush and in the sink. Each morning I would wake up to a pillow full of hair. It was a weekend and we were at the beach, so I refused to face the fact that I was loosing my hair and simply put it up in a ponytail. However, the next morning, exactly 14 days after my chemotherapy treatment, I woke-up and realized that I had to wash it. I took it out of the ponytail and proceeded to brush it. Over half of the hair on my head came out in my hands and landed in the sink. My hair was officially falling out. I tearfully asked my husband to join me in the bathroom in order to shave the rest off. So with my son in my lap and tears streaming down my cheeks, my husband shaved off what was left of my hair. I will never forget the first time I looked in the mirror at my bald head. It took my breath away. Then, my husband did what was one of the most caring and compassionate things he has ever done for me. He asked me to shave his head too. He said that if I had to be bald, he would be too! I have adjusted to life without hair. In many respects it simplifies life…no more hair products or blow drying. Getting ready in the morning is a snap. What I miss most about my hair, however, is my anonymity. People are very polite and try not to stare, but I can often read their thoughts on their faces. They know I have cancer. Everyone equates female baldness with cancer. They look at me and they think …”wow, she is so young, if cancer could happen to her then it could happen to me.” I am a daily reminder to everyone around me that cancer knows no boundaries…that it can happen to anyone, of any race, sex or age.


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