I am not my hair


The picture above is what I looked like about a month ago.


And the above picture is me this morning after four weeks of chemo.

I really thought I was resigned to losing my hair. When I got the diagnosis that my endometrial cancer had returned and that I was facing 18 weeks of chemotherapy I made plans. I bought two lovely wigs in a color called Brazen Auburn. I have beautiful scarves. I watched head-wrap videos on-line.

Three weeks into the chemo my hair began to fall out by the handfuls. All I had to do was run my hand through my hair and the evidence was right there…in my hand. It was also in my food,  on my clothes, my furniture, my floors, on my cat. Until it actually happens you really don’t know how you will feel. I cry at every handful. I can’t stand it. 

I made an appointment with my stylist to get it all off.  Here is the documentation of that appointment.


They tell me I have a nice shaped head.

They tell me I have a nice shaped head.


Knowing that it will happen is totally different from the reality when it does. I know that I’m lucky in that I don’t have long hair and it should only take about six months after chemo ends to grow back. Really, I’ve been told it starts growing right away but as someone who has tried to let her hair grow out I know….it takes a really long time. I’m hoping it will be back to almost current length by my birthday in December.

All I have to do is remember….I am not my hair.


Grazie mille to my dear Laura at Miabella Salon for all or her work and her prayers and for refusing to charge me for today. I love you, lady.

I’m adding this picture because it is  my favorite of me and Laura.

Laura...with tender loving care

Laura…with tender loving care



About mvaden1948

I love to travel to Venice (and probably other parts of Italy and beyond) and my camera leads me where she wants without any consideration as to whatever plans I may have. I enjoy photographing nature, my cat and anything that strikes my fancy. I have a "thing" for interesting doors and architectural details.
This entry was posted in Cancer, Chemo, Diavolo, fotografia, friends, Hair, me, Photography and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

33 Responses to I am not my hair

  1. Gail says:

    You’re correct, you are not your hair, but I understand the loss. You’re beautiful regardless.

  2. Susie L says:

    Michelle, you are beautiful, with or without hair. I think you do a lovely job with your headscarf, I love the leopard print on you! Sending you lots of cyber hugs.

    • mvaden1948 says:

      Thank you, Susie. I have been known to tell people when they ask my favorite color that it’s leopard. I have a lot of it in my wardrobe. And I have tons of scarves.
      I’m hanging in. So far just extremely tired all the time.

  3. foguth says:

    Michelle, you look beautiful without hair. I hope this round of chemo does the trick and kicks the cancer for good.

  4. Hair does not define a person. Your leopard scarf does 🙂 ti voglio bene.

  5. Shell Sherree says:

    I can’t imagine how it feels, bella. You are beautiful inside and out ~ with hair and without. Love the leopard print ~ it suits you !! Big hugs from Ella and me. x0x0x

  6. furbiziahs says:

    Dear Michelle, when you come to Venice, I suggest we will enjoy a nice day in town, a sort of fashion spring day with coffee, next March!

  7. Sue says:

    The snazzy, saucy scarf photo really shows off what beautiful skin and eyes you have!!

  8. Sue says:

    The snazzy saucy scarf photo really shows what beautiful skin and eyes you have!

  9. BHIB and Tom says:

    Your stunning eyes shine even more brilliantly now. I also like the scarf. Having thin white hair, I spend the summer months living under hats and it has become a fun hobby expanding my collection. (I think I could go a year without wearing the same hat twice) This could be a new pass time for you. Hey, maybe we could do dueling head gear on our blogs! 🙂

    • mvaden1948 says:

      Thank you, Tom. I have quite the scarf and hat collection also. And dueling head gear might be interesting.
      I just love those little hats on the horses. I just don’t have the “ears” for it though. 🙂

  10. Your bravery is beautiful, and so are you! Many, many prayers your way!

  11. lizbethraab says:

    Ciao, Michelle

    I just love the new look, your sense of humour and your beautiful blue eyes … ! They are like rays of sunshine, even if you can’t enjoy the sun just yet.

    In just half a year things will be looking so different and your trip to Venice will be ever so much closer!! That in itself is just awesome …

    Agree with all the above posts.
    Ciao bella

    • mvaden1948 says:

      Grazie, Liz,
      Actually I can be in the sun but have to wear heavy sunscreen, a hat and long sleeves as my skin is more sensitive to the sun thanks to the chemo. I’m fine with that now and always wore the hat, sunglasses and sunscreen just not worried about long sleeves before.
      Yes, Venice gets closer every day.

  12. Marc-André says:

    Thanks for sharing the latest update! 🙂

    We are thinking of you all the time and hope you’ll recover swiftly from the Chemo.

  13. Herman says:

    Wishing you all the best, my dear Michelle. Thank you and respect for sharing this post.

  14. Greg Henriikson says:

    You look lovely, Misha, and hang in there. We still need to get together for a session with Maria Padilla. Thinking of you. Greg

    • mvaden1948 says:

      Grazie, Greg. I may have a little PTSD for opera for a while… after all, I was at Turandot when the DVT happened. But at least we now know that the cancer caused the DVT.

  15. barbary says:

    much love to you, michelle, from uncle bill and aunt barbary. you are beautiful, always and all ways.

  16. Her Grand Tour says:

    Michelle this is so brave! Going through this must be tough enough, but being able to share it is just so beautiful. You look marvellous, and your hair was lucky to have you!

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