Wiggin’ Out

When Mom first heard she was going to have chemo, one of her first questions was how long will I have until my hair is gone.

12 days. Not 12-15.  Not each person reacts differently.  12 days from the first round. Firm.

Since she was in the hospital, and was resolving to the fact that she wasn’t going to get out until after her first chemo, she put me on a mission – find out where to go for a wig.

I called Hairafter Salon and Spa, where my mom has been having her hair done for 35 years. Neither of us thought they’d have them there but the idea was they would definitely point us in the right direction.

What followed was one of the sweetest conversations I’ve had since this whole thing started.

Me – Hi John (John Colombo is the owner, and has been personally responsible for my mom’s head for at least 35 years), My mom has cancer and she needs to know where to get a wig.

JC – Meaghan, I’m so sorry to hear that.  What do you mean where does she go?  She comes to me!

Me – Oh really? I didn’t think you had wigs there.

JC – We don’t.  I will find her one, I’ll cut it and dye it and it will look exactly like her – no one will ever know.

Me – Wow! Okay, she’s hoping not to have spend a million dollars – this is temporary.

JC – Meaghan.  Leave it to me, it’s done.  Send me a recent picture.  I’ll order a bunch, she’ll come in and we’ll pick one, then we’ll shape it, dye it and she’ll pick it up.

Me – Thank you

JC – This is the least we can do, do not worry about it – tell her it will be perfect.

To say Mom was touched is an understatement.

She had her first chemo, and 12 days later…. still a full head of hair.  Turns out they hadn’t given her both drugs the first round, and it was the second that would both knock her down for a few days, and make her lose her hair.  The delay gave her some time, she was able to go down look at a few options and pick one.  The entire staff at Hairafter had a hand in making sure it was perfectly dyed and coifed. She took it home, and John asked her to come in again when her hair started to fall.  Once again, he would take care of it.

Thursday she went to a “Look Good Feel Better” session at the hospital, and Friday morning her hair started getting messy – so back to Hairafter she went, and to no one’s surprise the staff were nothing but wonderful.  They took her to a room in the basement, where her head was shaved and her wig styled.

 35 Years is a long time

Needless to say, it was an emotional haircut.  But having it done by anyone else – inconceivable.  Having a team of staff that were so genuine and caring made it so much easier.

Fresh from her new ‘do, Mom and Sista went off to Changes in Newmarket for some accessories.  While Mom is happy with the look of her wig, it is hot and kind of like a tight ponytail – you can’t wear it all the time – your head kinda gets tired. Changes, sells all kinds of head scarves.  Scarves in every colour and weight. Scarves for sleeping, and scarves for fashion.

The Model

Mom has been known to collect an accessory or two, and what’s extra nice is they’re so reasonably priced, it’s easy to get one for every day of the week.

A girl needs accessories

Once again, the staff person at Changes was absolutely fabulous. She walked mom through how to wrap them, encouraged her to try different styles.  And even gave her one for free, simply because it was slightly smaller than it should have been.

All in all, losing her hair has not been pleasant – as anyone can imagine I’m sure.  But luckily there are people in our world who care so much for her happiness and those that have been called to a profession that makes this whole crappy part, a little bit easier.

From the bottom of our hearts… thank you.

Message from Mom: “I was sitting here looking at this picture from your wedding… they did it. I have the same haircut as I did that day!”

Help from Mom

Yes she does – and just as beautiful.

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9 responses

  1. Thanks Megs for this beautiful blog. I’ve just finished reading this one and have to admit to a few tears ! Your Mom looks absolutely gorgeous – the wig is perfect. It is true though that no one can ever be fully prepared for the emotional impact xx of losing their hair.

  2. Meaghan, your posts are wonderful. I think Mom looks great. It is amazing to hear how thoughtful and kind her hair dresser is, and the people who have the scarves. Pls. keep doing the great job of keeping us up-dated. and wow to your Mom who has such graciousness and courage.

  3. Hi Meaghan – What a wonderful post. Carol looks really great, no one would ever know that it is a wig. Your mom’s hairdresser and his staff did a wonderful job. Tell your Mom our thoughts are with her. Good luck on the next treatment.

  4. Megs…. you have once again reminded me of the true meaning of what it means to live a life well. Your mom… AND you AND your sister AND your dad are my personal heroes. Thanks for this inspiration – I needed a reminder of what true beauty really is, and how the small stuff really doesn’t matter. Much love to you and all my Weldons. xoxo

  5. Wow ooo lala! Carol you look amazing in your wig! Thinking of you. Since I saw you we have a new grandson….Kieran William Bhat. …we love him! Aaron and Julie are trying to survive new parenthood. They are sleep deprived and latching has not been easy. He had tongue tie which was discovered after a few frustrating days. It was snipped and they are trying to get him to latch. He has lots of pumped milk via bottle now but they want him to latch. I continue to knit socks! I want to try the next ones in purl one knit three. One of my nice German needles got caught in the sliding door of the van and it is bent! I have not found needles as nice here. These have a nice point to them. Any here have fatter points . Well that is metal needles. I did get a pair of square wooden needles 3.25 and they are nice. By pair I mean 5. Ram and I are wishing you healthy days ahead of this treatment regime. Hugs to you Dave and family. Ellen

    Sent from my iPad

  6. Your blog was sent to me by Betty Tienhaara who has been my friend since 1963! Ihave recently completed treatment for breast cancer and so understand your Mom’s desolation at losing her hair. But my hair has grown back and it’s Shirley Temple curly and brown, not grey as one would expect at age 72. I opted for hats rather than a wig as my treatment was mostly during the South African summer and a wig seemed altogether to hot an option.
    I am also sure that your Mom will experience the same amazing kindness and love-actions that I did during my treatment, from family, friends and from complete strangers. I was astounded by the love, generosity and comfort that came my way and that carried me through the weeks and months of treatment. I pray that all will be well with your Mom and her loving family. Joan Hill

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