Time has flown by since my last posting and I am reminded I need to stop and reflect on the amazing people who have entered my life.
I visit/volunteer at an oncology clinic nearby the first Tuesday of each month. I pack up a selection of wigs and mannequin heads, as well as hats, scarves, and miscellaneous items to present a ‘trunk show’ to the patients who have appointments that day. I set up in a conference room adjacent to the waiting area. I am there as a resource to answer questions as well as allow women to look at, touch and try on wigs. My visit in early January proved to be an interesting day. I met two women who wanted to purchase wigs.. I happened to have the right style and color for both of them. They were thrilled! Each of them placed the wigs on their heads and proceeded into the chemo room wearing their new look. I was standing in the background as one of them proceeded into the chemo room. She looked absolutely great which prompted others to inquire where she purchased her wig. She was quick to point in my direction and say “It’s Still Me”. I proceeded to give several patients my business card and answered questions regarding hair loss and wigs. Everyone is so appreciative of helpful information. I left that day feeling good about the fact there were 2 women who came with scarves and hats on their heads and left wearing hair that made them look healthy and happy. It’s amazing how much one’s self esteem is tied to appearance, specifically hair.
My February visit was just 3 days ago. My heart was warmed as I walked into the conference room to set up my display, only to see four of my customers in the waiting area. One of them was a younger woman wearing a scarf she purchased from me. She came up to me with an energetic hug and looked so adorable! The last time I had seen her, she was in my studio purchasing her wig and still had her hair. It was now gone to chemotherapy, but her smile and bright eyes were very recognizable and so striking. I was pleased to see how well she was handling the process. Most of the women I see struggle initially with the huge amount of emotion that accompanies what lies ahead. Fear, anger, uncertainty, feeling like they’re now the face of cancer with a bald head, how long before their hair falls out, what is the shedding process like, anguish over what others will think of them wearing a wig, will their wig look natural, how long will it be before their hair grows back, what texture and color will it be, and most of all, how do they get their arms around the whole process. These are a few of the many reasons most women place hair loss at the top (#1) of their list of concerns when going through treatment. I understand each emotion and find such reward in helping to empower them. Women are strong and extremely resilient. I stand amazed at every one who walks this path.