Losing my hair instead of my mind

After a two hour drive through not very nice traffic, car parking issues, seeing the oncologist, and settling down for chemo dosing number two, it was quite disheartening to then learn that it couldn’t go ahead. Hubby’s blood pressure was too high, and they couldn’t risk doing permanent damage to his organs. So we were packed off home, with me quietly seething that no-one had had the foresight to tell us that there are blood pressure parameters they have to work within, and that we should be monitoring hubby’s. Instead, we’ve now got three weeks to get it down to normal, or goodness knows what happens – we’re not ready to think about that.

Fortunately our local GP and Practice Nurse sped into action and this morning hubby was checked out, given a blood pressure monitor to bring home, prescribed medication to bring the pressure down to normal, and Movicol to help ease the chronic constipation which is unfortunately a very common side effect of Avastin treatment. As he has issues with swallowing and eating anyhow thanks to damage to his throat caused by previous surgery, not being able to go to the toilet has meant that his appetite has disappeared. Not good when he needs to be putting on weight.

We’ve been using alternative remedies such as good old fashioned prune juice, flaxseed and vitamin C, but with blockages like this (sorry to be so graphic!), only conventional drugs have the necessary oomph to flush it all out from the top down. Suppositories can work if waste is impacted in the lower bowel, but not in the top, and yes we’ve been using those too. So now you have the low down on hubby’s toilet habits.

As for me, well one of my lovely friends commented that she’d have had a breakdown if she had to deal with all of this. That’s not happening – simply because I won’t let it. Instead, I’ve started to lose my hair. There’s only one small bald patch at the moment, and it’s hidden, but if I lose any more then I will absolutely be buying a purple wig. Our diet is healthy and the doctor is pretty sure that it’s stress related, so I’ve been instructed to relax more (stop laughing), and to look after myself so that I’m as strong as I can be to look after hubby.

As some of you know already, losing my hair would not be as catastrophic for me as it might be for others, given that I’ve had a number two crop in the past, after an unfortunate incident involving half a bottle of wine and some hairdressing scissors. Having read that Sharon Stone used to cut her own hair in a room lined with mirrors, I though that I’d give it a go, using one of those tiny crappy mirrors attached to the front of my wardrobe. I basically managed to scalp myself. Fortunately my then hairdresser worked from home and was able to fit me in for an emergency appointment, but hearing my work colleagues scream when they saw me the following day was a bit disheartening. Hubby is being as supportive as ever, in his own words “don’t worry beau, it means that I can now start calling you cue ball…”

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