I hated having short hair. If losing it wasn't traumatic enough, the seemingly infinite amount of time it took to stop looking like a child took to my head with a pair of scissors added insult to injury. However, at some point, I decided I wanted to grow my hair out for the purpose of donating it to a charity that would use it to make a wig for another cancer survivor. While I had visions of giving a piece of myself away to help someone else, I had a selfish fear of letting go of it. My hair has always grown slowly, but after chemo, it grew even slower, or at least it seemed to. This may have been to my benefit though, because for every trim I went for ("Please, just take off the split ends, nothing more than you absolutely have to!") I became a little more detached from my hair and the anxiety about cutting it. Back in August, I almost did it, but at the last minute I opted for one of my usual bare-minimum trims.
Well, this week I finally did it. I didn't tell a soul, with the exception of my boyfriend, who has not yet seen the results. I did it after work. I drove to my usual salon- The Cutting Edge in Flemington- and there they prepared to cut my hair, which I had washed and put no products in, just like the donation requirements ask. While I only needed eight inches for my donation to be usable, I found myself asking that Jody, my stylist, make sure there was enough. I encouraged her to be sure it was more than eight, just to be safe. Two quick clips later, my pigtails were no longer attached to my head, and instead sat on the counter in front of me.
It was a little scary. But this time, the big haircut was my choice, not something I felt cancer was forcing me to do. I was in control, and my hair looked good! After a shampoo, cleaning up the blunt ends, and a blow out, I went on my way, my hair wrapped in a plastic bag, tucked in my purse. I plan on including a letter with my donation. Three years and about nine inches of myself are being shipped to Texas, and I think the story is worth including. When I write the letter, I'll post that, too.