Thursday, June 12, 2008

One bald & brave, one angry at the world

Today has been a big C-day so far. I saw my mom on the webcam, with almost no hair left (she decided to raise it off after it kept falling out). She looks very vulnerable, and at the same time, ready for battle (the only thing missing are two black stripes on her cheeks). She is being « brave », I could see that. I also saw the Kleenex she was still holding in her hands, betraying the earlier tears. And now, I just want to go home. Get in the car, drive 400 km and hug her. One day left, almost there.

We knew the hair-falling-out episode was coming, and we were prepared (from a practical point of view). In the last couple of weeks, we bought hair bands, scarves, hats,… We’ve experimented with them, and today, I went looking online for special scarves or knotting-techniques. It seems « cancer-scarves » are big business in the US and in the UK, but apparently in Belgium no one has realized that there are a lot of women out there looking for this. Which, stupidly, I admit, is causing me again to get quite angry.

Emotionally, there was no preparing for this. I was the first one to claim that this would be just an unimportant side-effect. Wrong. It’s making the disease very visible, you can’t get around it any longer. You look at my mom, and your mind goes « cancer ».
In my search for scarves, I came across several blogs and sites. Almost all about breast cancer. Again, irrationally, I got angry. F***, this is not the only cancer in the world. Then I ended up on a blog of another cancer patient, with pictures of her grandchildren. Again : anger – a source of happiness my mom hasn’t got.
I could go on.
In all, it has been a bad day. The fact that I almost didn’t get any sleep the past three nights is not helping. Cleaning the house didn’t help either. The box of cookies : also didn’t help. The prospect of yet another INSEAD-party tonight : I don’t know…We’ll see. Might be better to dance it off than start throwing plates and cups around. Writing it all down : seems to have done some good.

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