WARNING. The following blog post contains gratuitous male frontal nudity, graphic hand gestures, and words and images with no redeeming social value.
It is starting to look like we have a dog in the house. Hair is everywhere, and the rate of loss is accelerating. For those curious, chemo drugs indiscriminately attack fast dividing cells in the patient's body. Those include the cancer cells themselves, but also healthy and normal cells that play an integral part in your daily life. Cells in your bone marrow, where red and white blood cells are churned out on a regular basis, leading to low levels of both and accompanying fatigue and immune system concerns. Cells in your mouth, resulting in mouth sores. And other cells, including hair cells. Head hair is the fastest growing, most active hair on the body, and as such is the first of the hairs to take the hit. As of yesterday, mine had really thinned in the front and on patches on the side, and I was leaving piles of hair over any surface that I bent over for a passing moment. It was time to get rid of it.
Lovely wife C was in charge of running the hair clippers, and we retired to the bathroom for some grooming. Lets recap. Day 1:
Careful observation of the above will reveal the following: ample head of hair, perhaps in need of a haircut. Day 23:
Again, careful observation will reveal the following: tendrils of a spider plant that doesn't get enough sunlight. Oh, and the hair is gone. "But," you might cry, "you promised male frontal nudity and obscene finger gestures!" That I did. All I can say is it must have been the prednisone (a steroid) and a classic case of "roid rage" that interrupted what should have been a just another session of sitting on a stool having my head shaved. Part way through the grooming, I suddenly rose and tossed the stool aside like it was made of cotton candy. Shock and fear registered in C's face as she dropped the clippers and backed out of the bathroom. She was able to capture this picture before I ran from the house:
Was I angry at cancer? Did my last blog post trigger memories of teen angst? We may never know. My memory of the event is pretty hazy. Suffice to say the police found me some hours later in a tree. They were able to subdue me using crowd control techniques gleaned from ex-Russian secret police and returned me home where C was able to finish the shave. Needless to say, the events of the day left me tuckered:
The head stubble will continue to fall out, but at least the level of mess is better controlled. I have a pretty high chance of losing the rest of my hair too: eyebrows, arm hair, chest, etc. The clippers may make another appearance to control that loss as well. If there was any fairness in the world, the weird old-man ear hairs that have made an unwelcome appearance on my head would have been the first to go, but I'll bet they weather this whole storm in tact!