‘According to the biblical account, Samson was given supernatural strength by God in order to combat his enemies and perform heroic feats such as killing a lion, slaying an entire army and destroying a pagan temple. However Samson had two vulnerabilities, his attraction to untrustworthy women and his hair, without which he was powerless. These vulnerabilities ultimately proved fatal for him’.
Hmmmmmmm. I can so relate to Samson, as of late I’ve been feeling pretty hair flicking good, now that my hair has returned to ok, not quite to it’s pre treatment prime, but pretty foxy all the same. It’s remarkable the difference having a full head of hair makes. All these behaviours and old habits emerge. Twirling hair around your fingers, flicking hair over your shoulder, looking coyly between strands …with a chemo crop or growing upwards and outwards chemo style none of these are possible and actually you can’t imagine they ever will be. Maybe that’s just my coping mechanism, more of that later.
I can feel my mojo returning, and I’m attributing this to several factors. 1) The hair – of course, 2) Having weekly PT sessions as part of a cancer survivorship programme. Hercules, Hercules !! I’m very grateful for this opportunity and can feel my dormant muscles leaping back into action. Perhaps the biggest loss you experience with cancer is confidence. In every way it sneaks up on you, convincing you, you can’t do things, or you can’t do them well.
So flickable hair, and a feeling of restored strength, and surge of endorphins is resulting in a raised head and smiles. Which in return is lighting the inner pilot that clearly was subdued and engaging in mild flirting. ..I am out of practice here.
I’ve begun discussions about reconstruction, and believe me this feels the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make. Sitting in the waiting room last week I desperately wanted someone to just tell me what to do. A delayed reconstruction is a mentally tricky thing. I’ve had 3 years to accept and adapt to my body, maybe this was my coping mechanism to accept the forced change 3 years ago. I said back then, I need to love and accept my new self as I may be like this a very long time, if not forever. I truly do. I love my bony left and voluptuous right. Hmm and now I have this fabulous surgeon telling me the that even with the damage my skin has from radiotherapy, reconstruction would be possible and I’m seeing a half empty cup ….quite literally lol.
I’ve read every post I can about recon, for and against, looked at all the procedures, bought the t-shirt, phoned the friends that have had the same or similar procedure, got pictures of their surgery. I’ve asked my close friends and family for advice, but ultimately this one is my decision to make. It’s like being in the Cube, with the spotlight on you, and the tense pause of the presenter saying….so, what will you choose ?? Well,without the option of running with the large sums of cash obviously.
So here’s my pros and cons
PRO NEW BOOB
1)Symmetry restored – well as near as, at least having a mound of flesh instead of my lady boy landscape
2) Increased confidence
3) More versatility of clothes
4) Would it make me feel more datable ?
CONS NEW BOOB
1)What if the operation fails …
2)What if I can do less sports afterwards
3)What if there are complications – time off work, skin grafts, pain !!
I’m fit well and able, clearly the thought of being unwell of laid up, off work isn’t appealing. It’s about a 6-8 hour surgery, with up to 12 weeks recovery.
I promised myself to work on my confidence, so that I love me enough and that no one else matters. Would having a boob back really do that ? Or isn’t it something I will reclaim from deep inside of me.
If reconstruction had been immediate I no doubt wouldn’t have had to work through all the things I have and not feel so conflicted now. Part of me is of the old school , if it’s not broke don’t fix it, but it is broken, it’s detached.
Part of me wonders that in leaving it be, am I being a bit of an ostrich and avoiding parts of my life because of fear. Feel the fear and do it anyway girl…..Plus you’ve done chemo, what is scarier than that initially was
There is a third movement, people that whip off the healthy breast and become flat and fabulous as an alternative. I don’t feel like that is my answer either…But admire my F&F friends who have opted for this.
So, shhhh here’s my plan….get myself as fit and well as possible. Return to see surgeon to make a decision in January – and if I decide to proceed it will be February next year….watch this gap…..