I had a dream last night. I was being chased by boys, some cute and some aren't! I didn't like them so what I did was take off my wig and they all went running away. But when I thought I got rid of them, there's this one guy, he was handsome and a gentleman. He didn't chase me but just approached me. But I still took off my wig (i don't know why) maybe I thought he will just go away anyway if he finds out I'm bald. But he stayed and embraced me. It was a nice dream.
When I woke up I clearly remembered my dream which is unusual because i always tend to forget my dreams. I thought about it and realized it was triggered by my conversation with Jim last night. I normally wear nothing on my head at home except when I'm too cold, I would put on my hoodie. Jim asked me if I want to shave my head already while staring at my very thin-haired head.
I said, I'm not yet sure. I don't know if I'm ready to be really totally bald. I used to say I'm going shave it off when it starts thinning out or even when it just starts to fall off. But now I'm scared to shave, i think. I asked him, "do you think i should shave it?" He paused a bit, and he said, "well....."
And then he said "I'm just thinking you might get depressed everytime you see your thinning hair". I said it's ok because I don't look at the mirror that much anymore anyway.
And then I asked him to touch my head. He hesitated a little and gave me a slight scared look. I took his hand and put it on my head. I said, "isn't it so soft?" and smiled. He said "uhmm yeah," still with the "scared and unsure" look and quickly pulled his hand away.
Maybe at the back of my mind, I took that conversation to my sleep and dreamt of something that people are afraid of my balding head. And that it makes them want to go away. And somehow someone whom i love has the same feeling. I felt a little bad about it and made me feel self-conscious and undesired.
So I shared my dream with Jim's mom in the morning. I told her the dream and the conversation I had with Jim last night. She had a different thought about it. She said maybe Jim feels bad about it for me too. Like its tough for him seeing me bald coz it makes it more real that I'm sick. Which at first, it was how i felt bad about my hair falling out, it makes it more real that I have cancer.
She also said maybe Jim feels bad about me being sick. Like the time I felt I wish I was sick instead of baby James when he was at the hospital because of his kidney condition. I always prayed that God give me any disease instead of baby James.
I felt a little better after my conversation with mother-in-law. It must be tough for Jim to see my balding head all the time and he has no choice but to see it. At least I have a choice not to see it, I just have to avoid looking at the mirror or touching my head.
It must be tough for my family. I wish I can shield them from it.
So I wrote our couple's counselor this morning. She has been helping us go through challenges that couples encounter especially during the first year of having a child. And now she still sees us through as we go through another challenging phase in our lives as a family.
I want to share what she has to say, which made me feel better and cry a little:
"Aren't dreams interesting? They definitely help you sort through and pay attention to feelings. The baldness is an adjustment for you and everyone. As you know, even someone just changing their hairstyle and color can be shocking and take awhile to get used to. I know you are in the process of making peace with your hair loss and seeing it as temporary. In my experience, people will get used to it and react off of you. I have seen people fighting cancer wear their baldness with pride and a smile, knowing it is a sign that they are doing their best to live a long life. Yes, it might scare people (including Jim) at first and be a reminder of how fragile life might be. People can be very uncomfortable talking about any kind of illness or knowing what to say- they can follow your lead when you talk openly or remain quiet, depending on how you feel. Most people know someone who has dealt with cancer and just like when you are pregnant, often feel like sharing their own stories. Of course Jim feels terrible that you are ill- he loves you and it can be a helpless feeling for a partner. In time, I think you will find that your friends and family will relax with it and focus on you and not your scalp. Honestly, you don't need to worry about shielding people from this. It is simply a reality of life. Be your beautiful, loving self Krissy and that is what will be noticed :)"
Its true, change is difficult at first. But in time, it will get easier. Its also true how most women are afraid to even change hairstyles, or even change hairstylist. Our hair may be our crowning glory but beneath and beyond it is more important.
I'm going to embrace it from now on.
Thursday was a happy day to be bald! I went to American Cancer Society's Helens Room which gave me the biggest smile that day when they asked me to come in for my wig appointment. Not only was it free, but whatever hats, caps and scarves i touched and liked, they gave it to me! More generous people should multiply on earth. They truly made me happy being bald today.