Sunday, July 8, 2012

Hair Problems and the End Of It


Since the time I am aware
I have had my head full of hair
Without much fuss or without much care
They were always present there
Until cancer prepared a snare
To catch me unaware
The chemotherapy affair
Involved lot of wear and tear
And stripped every strand of hair
Leaving my head fully bare
Was it right? Was it fair?
To answer the question who would care?
Without the hair’s flowing flair
My head was exposed to sun’s flare
The chilly winds had their share
Daring me to venture in their lair
When in anger I would swear
                                   And try to pull out my hair                                                 
My bald head gave me angry stare
And said, “My Gosh! How could you dare?”
My hair brushes lay here and there
For they had no styles to prepare
People would give my bald head stare
And exclaim, “Whatever happened to your hair?”
Some made fun of my head bare
In funny jokes my hair they would ensnare
I would hide in home at times in despair
Not willing to hear what they had to declare
Losing my hair was worse than nightmare
This gave me a big scare
It was then that I became aware
How much I loved and needed my fuzzy hair
Since then I have showered them with care
I proudly say I love my hair
And that was the end of my hair problems and scare
Because all our hair needs, like children, is lovey dovey care!

I was one of those lucky people who have thick and strong hair without doing much for it. I can remember my thick plaits from my childhood which would feel heavy to be carried around, would interfere with my activities and would bring our curses from me. I never bothered to care or nourish it ever. It was my Mom who patiently spent time removing the knots, oiling it and combing it neatly while I read some book. My mom took good care of my hair in a traditional way by oiling it with pure coconut oil and washing it clean with warm water. She did not trust me with my hair care until I was grown up and married.

For me, the hair was of not much importance at all. I never suffered from hair fall or dandruff. I was always busy with books, games or being naughty. The two plaits hanging on my shoulders never did not get any love or attention from me in my childhood, nor did the single plait when I was grown up.
 The change in my attitude towards my hair came with the treatment for breast cancer which involved chemotherapy. I did not pay much attention to the part of hair loss which would accompany the treatment, because my concern at that moment was for the surgery, my physical changes, death, and above all my children. My major problems had pushed the impending hair loss to the back of my mind.
It was only after the second cycle of chemotherapy; when one fine day my hair decided to give me a scare by coming out in bunches as I tried combing my it, did I realize that I would go bald for at least few months and had to deal with it. By the time I finished brushing my hair, my lap was filled with enough strands to make a wig.  Filled sadness and bitterness, I was totally confused and I did not know what to do with it. I calmly dug a hole and buried my hair. My sense of humour was missing that day. I did not have enough information or coolness to donate it to make a wig. I had half hair still left on my head but I knew that in no time they are going to come out and soon I will have to deal with total hair loss bravely.  I could have shaved all of it and spared the trouble of having them fall down all over me, but back then, 16 years ago, not being familiar with chemotherapy, side effects and a young foolish woman, I lovingly held on to the whatever strands were left on my head until one fine day they said goodbye to my scalp and left it bare. It scared my kids to see their Maa with bald head. More than fear it was the concerned and worried looks they gave me which wrung my heart. If I were smart I could have shaved off their tiny heads with mine and had fun with a good bold and bald family, unfortunately, I was not cancer smart back then.
Days went by and I slowly got adapted to the bald head. I used to feel kind of cold and light headed earlier but slowly it started to feel normal to be bald. People would give me stares and ask questions at times. Someone offered me flowers to wear on my head as a joke. Some predicted that my hair would never grow back. Someone used my head as a band to beat on it rhythmically. I hurt inside but did not show it outwards. It was no time for fun for me. I was fighting a rough battle for my life and all these people could see was the joke on my bald head. Aaahhh! How boring life would be without such people around us (Sarcasm).
Unknowingly I developed a habit of running my hand over my bald head and loved the smooth feeling of it LOL. One fine day I felt something rough on my head as though it was having a bad rash, which worried me. But to my pleasant surprise I saw there was some hair sprouting on my head. For the first time I realized how much I loved my hair and how much I had been longing to have them back on my head while trying not to think about it. Soon my head was filled with rough fuzzy hair which I would have disliked earlier, but now, I loved them as new born babies and took good care of them.
I visited a dermatologist ad asked him for hair care advice for the first time ever in my life. I started using shampoo with less chemicals and mild on my scalp so that the growing hair would get enough nourishment. They came out very curly and rough than before for some unknown reason, but anyway I loved having head full of hair back again. They grew quickly as though they were longing to be back to the length they were before.
I realized the importance of hair and the change it makes to my appearance only when I lost it. Since then I have loved my hair and accepted it as a part of my beauty, my personality and ME. I brush it regularly (that is when I am not hooked up with a book), oil it gently, wash it thoroughly with a mild shampoo and appreciate it. Gone are the days when I used to wash it with any soap available and tie it up tightly after running a brush through it just once from the top to bottom. Surviving Cancer has taught me quite few lessons and this is just one of them. Learning this lesson was how I started to love my hair ... and that was the end of my hair problems!

My hair turned up more curly and short after my Chemotherapy. It was not the same type of hair I had earlier. I love my new hair. Although I have learnt my lesson and realized that I am same person even with the bald head…….. not everyone is smart enough to know it.  So my hair deserves love, care and pampering.

This is a real story written as a contest entry for a contest on Indiblogger by  Dove Damage Therapy

To find a solution to your hair problems and end it all visit


  1. Very beautiful touching hair story and lovely poem....
    Ahgr!...I feel angry on people who made fun of you x-(...I don't understand why people try to judge without knowing their story....

    I really loved your new curly hair...<3....Very beautiful...

    All the best for the contest...

    1. Thanks Valli, it was not lack of knowledge. All knew I was going through cancer, it was lack of humanity on their part.

  2. you have given a much needed perspective to this contest. so much or vanity. and thanks for the pic. looks great, madam. smiley.

  3. oh my oh my .. now those are healthy hair you go there ..

    I had such long hair ..

    lovely poem and all the best for the contest


    1. Thank you, you have been a great supporter of my blog always.

  4. sad that and now i am glad that you got your hair back after chemo.Good luck

    1. Thanks. I have survived for 16 years, how luckier can I get.

  5. After reading your post, the word Chemotherapy scares me. I can only imagine the despair you went through when you lost your lovely hair. Good to hear you got your hair back now :)
    Your poem was simply wonderful. Best wishes for the contest ma'am :)

    1. Chemotherapy is the worst part of my cancer experience. Yes it is scary but it does save our lives. I think it is very necessary for treating cancer. Thank You Neha

  6. We all seem to learn to appreciate things only when we lose lose them. Thanks for sharing your touching story and rhyming poem. I will try to appreciate and care for my hair a bit more, from now on:)

  7. It's inspiring to know that you've overcome your greatest fear through life. Thank God and may God bless you! :)

  8. When you see an otherwise normal person but with no hair, one of the first questions that comes to your mind is if she is under chemo. How could people make fun of you like that? Glad that the hair is back in place and gracing you now :)

  9. Wow, I read the story and started thinking if it's true. yes, it is. You are one of those writers whose writing can make people idolize you.Bravo!!



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