A lot of people diagnosed with cancer go straight to the internet to research it, but I didn’t. I am glad I never did, because I would’ve been a lot more scared about the results of my bone scan and lymph node biopsy, had I ever bothered to Google the matter. Yesterday, however, I finally read all the leaflets and brochures given to me a month ago about breast cancer, and I noticed that one of the emotions they said people may go through is guilt.
I am one of those people who feels guilty about everything. Guilty about taking a day off work, guilty about staying inside on a sunny day, guilty about sleeping in for an extra hour, guilty for going shopping when I walk past a homeless person. It was only yesterday, when I asked the oncologist if I could go for a run if I felt well enough after chemo, that I remembered that the Friday afternoon when I got diagnosed, I felt guilty for not going for the run I had planned to do that day, or the following day. It is only in hindsight that I can see how ridiculous it was to expect myself to go for a 10k run on the same afternoon as I had been hit by the biggest bombshell of my life. (I did my final 10k run on the Sunday, and who knows when my next one will be).
I ask too much of myself. Tomorrow hails the final week of my 20s, and I have decided that as of my 30s, I will be good to myself. My new decade’s resolution is to Feel Less Guilty. Since being diagnosed with cancer, I have already started to cut myself a bit of slack. Suddenly threatened with the possibility of not living for another 30 years, I have fewer qualms about getting taxis if I can’t be bothered to wait for a bus or train, and buying myself an expensive coffee/pair of shoes/earrings/dress if I want one. I have always been a saver and a non risk-taker, and that probably won’t change, but if I can keep uttering that phrase “Be good to yourself/Don’t feel guilty” then hopefully my next 10 years will be more relaxed and enjoyable.
Yesterday’s wig fitting was a disaster. I spent an hour in the company of a rude, sweaty Mancunian specialist chemotherapy wig salesman-come-hairdresser, void of all people skills, poking and prodding and pulling at my forehead with his sweaty hands and forcing me to try hideous wigs. Slightly stunned by his attitude, I eventually gave in to his insistence that I should order the only wig out of 500 that he said would be suitable for me, and waltzed out of there, determined not to return. I am not sure I will go back for the wig fitting in a week’s time, for fear that he will injure me with his uncoordinated, unwieldy scissor-hands.
So, I am wigless. I am heading to London on Friday for birthday and Olympics madness and I shall be staying in Peckham, where I am reliably informed there is an abundance of wig shops. I believe these wig shops are mostly aimed at African and Caribbean ladies, so do not be surprised if you see me next sporting a weave or afro.
Finally, I am considering ordering from Continental Wigs, which has been highly recommended by a good friend. (Please note this is a different place from the one mentioned above). It seems the wig selection caters mainly to ladies still wishing to sport 80s hairstyles, and I am considering the Christina or the Toni. How would I look?