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.

Good Morning W-day

My morning started early.  About 5:45 was when I woke up.  I was a little bit angry as I usually am when I wake up too early.  I tried to go back to sleep. No dice.

I checked my Facebook at about 6:15 and got my first best wishes message from Cousin Stacey.

“I just read your blog it made me laugh reminded me of someone I know 5 months ago. I remember thinking while sitting at the dinner table in front of the large crowd ‘ huh guess we should have planned what we were gonna say’ but that and all the other details just didn’t matter I was having too much fun. My hair was falling out my dress kept falling off my shoulders yet I didn’t care it was just all too exciting and I have a feeling you will know just what I mean! I look forward to hearing what your fave part of the day is after it is all said and done, I know mine was coming home at the end of the night and talking with paul for hours about the wedding since we really didn’t get to chat the whole evening!

Congrats, wish we could be there..I can feel your excitement from here lol. Hope you get some sleep!! Can’t wait to see pictures no doubt they and you will be breathtaking!!

Congrats Mrs.M!!!”

I cried. It was just what I needed to start my day – a heartfelt reminder to relax, enjoy and love every minute of it.

I turned on the lights and got an equally heartfelt text message from Sista. Another message telling me to enjoy and love it, and that she was happy for me.

I cried.

Then I got myself together and headed out to get my hair done.  First appointment was at 7:30 and 45 minutes away.

I didn’t cry while having my hair done, maybe I would have if I had had the veil moment (FYI my hairdresser told me all about how much he hates veils while he was doing my hair and how he was THRILLED that I wasn’t covering up his masterpiece with a piece of fabric.)

I’ll note here that I did finally remember to eat – it didn’t last long.

Things we should have done in this stretch – 3 cars. There were 7 of us having our hair done, we came in two cars which worked but we probably should have left in 3… it would have gotten make-up appointments started that much earlier. No biggie – we all got there and we were all beautiful.

As for my hair, I wanted it up but messy.  I wanted it to look like I could have done it myself – but didn’t. I didn’t want a bridal helmet, but I also didn’t want to be futzing with it all day.

I got exactly what I wanted.

Each of the girls got whatever they wanted. Some went up, some went with down, but all of them incorporated an orange fabric flower in their hair.

BEAUTIFUL!!

Special thanks to everyone at Hair After Salon and Spa for the AWESOME hair!

And BIG thanks to West Photo for all the beautiful pictures! Feel free to look – but don’t take what’s not yours!