Free Hair!

Really! On Monday of this week I went to a class at the Highline Cancer Center where I receive my treatment. The class is called Look Good, Feel Better and it is put on by the American Cancer Society and the American Cosmetics industry. It is pretty much a make-over class with tips for women going through treatment. The gift you get there, besides the tips, is a make up bag filled with very high end products (Estee Lauder, Dior etc) that they say the value is about $400. I googled the products when I got home and they were correct. Since I tend to wear a head scarf most days (I do have a lovely little short wig that I’m just not ready to wear yet that I bought when I was first told I would need chemo) the presenter asked if I had gotten my free wig. They have a room behind the gift shop that has wigs and hats that are free to the women in treatment who have hair issues (either completely lost their hair or it’s only beginning to grow back). Well, I’m not usually there when it’s open because of their limited hours and only open when I’m getting my treatment. So I had time when the class was over and stopped in. The walls are lined with shelves of wigs in every style and color. And this red one called to me. It was the first I tried on and I walked out wearing it.


That is also the makeup from the make-over. Not much different than my usual makeup…just a lot more expensive if I’d had to pay for it.

The wig is the most beautiful shade of red….okay, I have been saying that in real life it’s the color of an Irish Setter dog. I love that color and back in my 20’s I dyed my hair that color. Until L’Oreal stopped the shade and I decided it was too much trouble trying to duplicate it and went back to my dark blond/mousy brown. Funny, it may have been a prophesy of something to come…the shade was called Venetian Titian.


I love it and so do the friends I’ve shared the pictures with. And considering that it has been an otherwise bad week because the neuropathy is really getting me down I needed a treat. And sorry but I don’t have the energy to clean the mirror so the smudges are on the mirror as I take these pictures in my bathroom mirror with a “real” camera. Not a phone. I use my phone for calls and now that I’m finally in the 20th, if not the 21st century, texting.

Yes, I’m still upbeat and I know I am more than halfway through the chemo and my prognosis is really good but…

I’m only 67 and really tired of walking like I’m 90. The numb toes from the neuropathy throw off my balance so I walk very, very slowly with a cane. I’m driving because I’m not dizzy but even a mundane trip to the grocery store is extremely tiring. I have to rest when I get home before I can put things away and this morning I thought I was going to have to ask them for a chair while I was waiting to check out. Sometimes I have to rest for an hour before I can start putting the stuff away. Usually I manage to get the frozen stuff put away faster than that. The cat food still isn’t put away from this morning…it’s still in the bags in my shopping trolley that I had to have a neighbor help me get up my three (yes, only 3) back steps. If he hadn’t been coming out the door I would have called my friend in the complex to come help me.

I have always been a very independent person but I am learning to ask for help. After all, I need it.

Okay, that’s my gripe. I feel better getting it out. No, I’m not going through chemo as beautifully as I thought I was. The red rash on my hands is getting better with the prescription I’ve been using. I found mixing the L-Glutamine powder with Greek yogurt is easier than trying to mix it with juice and drink it but I’m doing it both ways. I can only eat so much yogurt in a day. If you mix it with juice you have to keep stirring or you end up with grit at the bottom of the glass. It is tasteless so doesn’t change the taste of what you put it in. I have not noticed it making the neuropathy better but at least it is not getting worse. That’s a good thing.

I’ll leave you this week with another lovely picture from the City of My Dreams.

But such wonderful reflections

And dear Diavolo sends purrs for all of your prayers. He is doing well.

Really? You have a camera setting for "pet portrait"?

Really? You have a camera setting for “pet portrait”?

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, Cats, Chemo, City of My Dreams, Diavolo, fotografia, friends, Hair, Home, me, Photography, Transformation, Venezia, Venice and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to Free Hair!

  1. gooddayrome says:

    Venetian Titian! How perfect is that! You look amazing. Stai bene, cara Michelle.

    • mvaden1948 says:

      It’s funny because I had not thought of that old box of hair color in many, many years and suddenly here I am with that hair color….even if it is a wig because I have no hair currently!!
      Grazie bella for the compliment.

  2. Susie L says:

    I swear, you look like Ann-Margret with that wig. You are gorgeous! I am so sorry about the fatigue and the neuropathy. You really are an amazing person, you are so strong and what a great spirit you have! You will get through this, and in March, you will be in Venezia! Xoxoxoxo

    • mvaden1948 says:

      Grazie, Susie. I’m feeling a little better this evening. I think maybe the L-Glutamine is starting to work because my hands feel a bit better. It’s been a week now that I’ve been taking it. I went by the health food store and got more today. I saw also that they had it in a capsule form but to get 15 grams a serving you would have to take more than a couple of 500 mg capsules. So it would cost a lot more money. I’m doing well with sometimes putting it in yogurt (shared that idea with my doctor and he said he would pass it on) and other times like this evening with putting it in the diet cran mango juice. And although the rash on my hands is getting darker the doctor warned me that was part of the healing process. I realize in writing the blog that if I go for the full treatment I only have six left! Yay! I know things won’t go back to normal right away but I just wasn’t looking forward to hobbling around Venice with a cane. But then that would be better than not being in Venice.
      Love to you both.

      • Susie L says:

        You just stay strong and keep that wonderful attitude and spirit going. You’ve got this!

  3. foguth says:

    You look great as a red head!
    If you happen to have an Amazon Prime account, have you tried their Prime Pantry boxes? They have some types of cat food & litter plus you can get paper products and canned goods delivered to your door – at least I assume that is how the postal system delivers packages in your complex. Of course, they don’t have items that require refrigeration, so you’d still need to go to the store for that sort of stuff.
    I’ve also heard that some grocery stores deliver – that might be something to look into.

    • mvaden1948 says:

      I don’t have Amazon Prime. And Safeway has a pricey delivery service. I do have friends who live nearby who will go to the store for me. The issue is really more trying to maintain independence. And yes, the mailman, Gary, delivers to my door. He even gave me his cell phone number so if he has a package and I’m out in the morning he will leave a note in my box. I call him and he’ll drop the package by on his way back to base in the afternoon. It saves me a trip to the post office the next day. Too bad the service at the post office isn’t that good.

      • foguth says:

        Our mailman is Bob and he’s great, too. Bummer that you don’t have prime – we don’t have Safeway, but I hear that you can place your order with Publix over the phone – size & brand, etc., and they will have it ready for pickup, which saves a lot of time and stress.

  4. michelle, i want that wig………….gorgeous you.

    i am ever so grateful to hear humor in your writing.

    purrrr to diavolo from jack black.


  5. Venetian Titian? Perfect!! The wig suits you beautifully. What a score! It’s lovely that they offer the free wig, and what a generous bag of make-up goodies. I’m glad you had some nice things happening to make up for some of the not so nice things. Getting the groceries delivered to your door sounds like a wonderful thing if you can find a place that appeals. Hugs to you and Diavolo, bella. Wishing you a beautiful weekend. x0

    • mvaden1948 says:

      Groceries delivered by the store is out of the question…too pricey. I shop this particular store to save money and their delivery adds lots. You always have to pay for that kind of service. I have several friends who have offered to do my shopping but I’m just not ready to give it up yet. Although I may start asking for rides so I have help carrying it in to my apartment.

  6. wfdec says:

    Wow! Looking great!

  7. Your makeover is very pretty! Keep your spirits up friend, you’re doing so well with all of the challenges thus far, you’re almost there!

  8. Lulu says:

    One day at a time and be patient with your lovely red-headed self!

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