Mirror, Mirror on the wall, what the hell IS that?
It seems my reflection and I have had a big falling out. Gone for the most part are my brows and lashes, my skin has become the new and exclusive tone of chemo grey and i've been gaining weight which is 'good' for treatment but bad for my self -esteem. In short, I look like i've got cancer which is quite frankly the final straw in this whole charade. You see, i'm at peace with HAVING cancer (as long as it's a temporary arrangement), and DOING cancer with all the treatment but LOOKING like I have cancer? No thanks. I didn't sign up for that.
At the start of this week I was virtually in hiding and I thank the winter weather for gracing me with the opportunity to pull my hat down and scarf up. I think I had got it down to not much more of an inch of me being on display. If I had found full on stealth combat gear in my wardrobe I would have opted for that and I had begun shuffling with my head down- in part due to achey feet from the docetaxel but also due to a full on non-verbal apology for my appearance. I was looking like this when I waliked in to the Look Good, Feel Better course I had booked myself into months ago when I thought I might need a pick me up around this stage. Nice one, me.
Look Good, Feel Better is a charity run by the beauty industry and women undergoing treatment for cancer can attend a session with beauty advisors and be shown how to apply makeup when they're suffering the effects of chemo. Attendees also receive a makeup bag full of products worth about £250 and if like me you love make-up, it's a massive treat, even more so that it's entirely free.
There were only four of us on the course that day but I noticed an interesting thing. Each of us arrived with heads bowed, chatty but subdued. As the two hours unfolded and we grabbed back a bit of our selves we all had changed. There was a spark back in our eyes, more smiles and we walked out of the room bolder than when we arrived. I'm not saying one slick of lipstick can solve your problems but in my case it makes me feel better prepared to face them.
So here's the new me....looking alrightish and feeling better for it.