Friday, September 27, 2013

On the girls seeing me bald....

Round 2 has been much better than round 1.  I stayed in bed all weekend per Dr.'s orders and by Dr. I mean my actual Dr., my husband, and my mom.  :)  Round 1 I think I tried to do too much too fast so I promised myself to just let my body rest.  It is so hard for me to do that.  I am not a couch potato.  I like to be doing something.  I mean, how many old 90210 reruns can I watch (turns out, a bunch!)  I am definitely catching up on all my TV shows.  I literally stayed in bed Friday-Monday.  I started feeling better Tuesday morning and it improved throughout the day.

My parents had the girls starting on Thursday after my treatment so I didn't see them until Tuesday when I picked them up from school.  I missed them so much.  We decided it is better to just have my parents take them to their house for a few days each treatment because I just don't want them to see me in that condition.  When we're at home, they want me to play with them and I hate telling them I can't.  They love staying at mimi and papa's though.  They seem totally oblivious to everything going on which is all I wanted when this whole thing began.  They are just too little to understand all of this.  I never want them to be scared or anxious so I try to remain as strong as possible for them.

The girls seeing me bald was quite an experience.  We had prepared Julianne a bit.  Originally, I thought I would tell the girls that I was getting medicine to stay healthy and that the medicine would make me tired and would make my hair fall out but it would grow back.  After discussing with Shaun he was of the opinion that if we told Julianne that, she would never want to take medicine again.  I agreed.  So Shaun just opened up a conversation about cutting your hair.  He asked if she had ever seen someone without hair before.  She said "yes, babies!"  Shaun showed her some pictures of some bald men and then showed her some pictures of bald women and said that even women can cut all their hair if they want to.  We then moved into telling her that I was going to cut all of my hair off and that I would get to "play dress up" with wigs, hats, and try a bunch of new things.  She really was fine with it and said "I don't care who cuts their hair as long as it's not mine...I want Rapunzel hair!"

Claire saw me first.  I was wearing a hat and she said "why are you wearing a hat mommy?"  I told her I had cut my hair and that it wasn't there anymore.  She said "I want to see" so I showed her.  She gasped and said "Oh no mommy!  Why did you do that?"  I wanted to cry.  She asked me why I did it a couple of times and then went on to something else about 20 seconds later.  When Julianne saw me wearing a hat later that evening she said "did you cut your hair off?" I said yes and she asked if she could see.  I took my hat off and she stared at me for a second and then said "mommy, I think you look nice and I am going to say a prayer that your hair grows back curly because I know you have always wanted curly hair."  This kid melts me. Seriously.  She is the sweetest thing.

It barely phased them at all.  They are totally used to it now and it's only been a few days.  They run in to our room in the morning to see what scarf or hat I'm going to wear that day.  Although Claire did say the other day "mommy, you're hair looks weird."  She's 3.  There is no filter.  The bottom line is that the girls seem to be fairly unaffected by what's going on right now.  That is exactly what I want.  My first thought when I got my diagnosis was the girls.  How would we tell them?  Turns out, we didn't have to.  When I was torn about what to do, something Shaun said just struck me.  He said "babe, we don't even understand it, how will they?"  They wouldn't.  They would be scared and afraid they would lose their mommy.  I won't do that to them.  This whole journey is just to big for them to understand at their age.  That's why I am writing this blog. So I can share my story with them when they are old enough.  I want them to know that I fought so hard because of them.  So I can be here for them for as long as possible.

This all is not to say that anyone who shares their diagnosis with their small children is wrong.  This is just what is right for our girls.  If the girls were a couple of years older, it would probably be different.  After speaking with their school counselor and discussing it with each other at length, it's the decision we made.  It's working for us.  I'm trying so hard to keep life as normal as possible for them.  So far, I think it is.  I can't ask for more than that.


18 comments:

  1. ah, just got a chance to catch up on your blog! i love that you're writing!! makes me smile so big. and i love that pic of you & your girls at the end. i love how kids can lighten any mood :) make the greyest skies blue & sunshiny. love you! you are a great momma. your girls are so blessed. hope you're still doing okay! xoxo

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    1. Thanks friend! I am going to be in Murietta Sunday, the 20th-Tuesday morning the 22nd. Would love to get together if you are able. Let me know! Maybe coffee or lunch or something Monday?

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  2. Jenn, you don't know me but I am a loooooong time friend of your mother's. lol This is the first I've read of your blog but I've sort of kept up on your current journey through what your mom posts on FB. I just want to encourage you and let you know how impressed I am with how you are handling all of this. August marked 8 years cancer free but that is not to say I know or understand all you are going through. I only say it as an encouragement to you and hope it is. Please know that you are constantly remembered. ~hugs (Diane Gillette Phillips)

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    1. Thanks Diane! I appreciate you following along with my journey. Congrats on 8 years Cancer free. That's wonderful! I sure hope I am saying that in 8 years!

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  3. I think the way you explained to the girls about your hair was perfect. I just love Julianne's comment. Hang in there, you are going to beat this.

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    1. Thanks Tanya! They are the sweetest girls, I'm so proud of them! I'm so glad they are handling it well and seem to be un-phased by it.

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  4. Hi Jenn...I found your blog through Kelly's Korner, and I just wanted to tell you that YOU ARE AMAZING! You are handling everything with so much grace, your girls are so blessed. Saying a little prayer for you!

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    1. Thank you Karrie! I appreciate your prayer! Thanks for popping over from Kelly's blog. She is such a dear sweet friend to me.

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  5. I found your blog through Kelly's Korner. Yesterday, I had my fourth chemo for breast cancer. You may have already heard of this, but there's a brow and lash gel that will help prevent your eyebrows and eyelashes from falling out. It's called Brian Joseph Brow & Lash Conditioning Gel. It has worked for me! I know if you're anything like me, being able to hold onto anything "normal" means a lot. You and your family are in my prayers, and I would covet yours!

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    1. Hi Gina,
      Thanks so much for coming over from Kelly's Korner! I just ordered that eyebrow gel you recommended and can't wait to try it. I am so hoping to keep my eyebrows and lashes. So far, they are hanging on. I have big bushy eyebrows that normally have to be waxed every 2 weeks so that is probably why. I haven't waxed them in 2 months and they have only thinned a tiny bit. Thanks for the recommendation and I will pray for you and your chemo treatments as well. I hope you are feeling o.k. Are you doing 6 treatments?

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  6. Hi! My name is Shari and I can so relate to what you are going through. I popped over from Kelly's blog to read your story. I remember getting my head shaved and having my children see me bald. The two older ones were OK with it but our youngest didn't like it so he would run and find me a hat/scarf/wig. I am so glad you have family and friends to help you. I will keep you in my prayers. Please, if there's anything I can do, let me know at slfunk3763@hotmail.com. I hope this finds you having a good day.

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    1. Thank you Shari! I appreciate the prayers so much! Are you finished with your treatments? I hope you are feeling well. I'd love to connect with you to chat. I'll email you soon.

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  7. I'm also here from Kelly's Korner....my mom had the same type of breast cancer (IDC) when I was 7 and my sister 9 (she had lumpectomy, chemo, radiation, and a bone marrow transplant). I don't remember much discussion about her breast cancer and have very vague memories of the whole process. However, I have a specific memory of her hair falling out when I was playing with it while we were reading a book together. She said her biggest prayer during that time was to live to see her girls alive....fast forward 21 years and she's one of my best friends. Good luck with your cancer journey and keep doing what you're doing for your family!

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    1. Thank you for sharing this inspiring story Barbara. What a wonderful story of survival! So glad your mom is ok!

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  8. Hi Jenn, I just found your blog through Kelly's blog (and we are also in the same Sunday school class)... I get tears reading your story and I admire your strong attitude through this! It was so sweet and thoughtful how you shared your new haircut with your girls. Thanks for sharing your journey and know that I'm praying for you.

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    1. Hi Emily, we met at TCBY right? Thank you for praying for me. I've missed the last few weeks at church because of not feeling well but I sure hope to see you soon!

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  9. Hi Jenn! ALSO found you via Kelly's Korner.. Thanks for being so real about what you are going through! I've been encouraged today by your words about praising in the storm. Also, I recognize some of your pics from Marianne's twitter. Her sweet daughter is in my class. So glad you have great friends to cheer you on! I don't know you, but will be praying for you during this fight. And hey maybe you will get curly hair! Your girls sound adorable.

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    1. Marianne is one of my favorite people in the world! She is a dear dear friend to me! I just love their little family. What a treat to have Ms. Kaitlyn in your class, such a sweetie! I am so glad that you found my blog and I'm so glad you were encouraged! That is the whole purpose of this blog! Hope you continue to follow along!

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