Wigging out


Waiting for chemo round two to start and to get my new look

This is where I expected to say something along the lines of… I got my NHS wig today. Hahaha it so was hideous, I’ve been transformed into a 1980’s soap opera super-star. Get a load of the pictures below.

But there are no photos as I didn’t get my wig.

This morning I woke up to find a halo of hair on my pilliow. It looked horrendous.

But I was told at hospital later it’s likely that it’s not falling out, it’s just thinning. Maybe I’ll get to keep most of it after all.

So I spent 6 hours wearing the special freezing hat to cool my scalp and attempt to save my hair.

Again it was excuriating. My forehead felt like it had frostbite to start with. At least this time it was a bit of a better colour.

The NHS wig man came in with a selection of wigs for me to try on. He proudly took one of them out of its box and it didn’t look too bad.

He agreed with the nurses that I don’t need a wig, certainly not yet anyway. They’ve all been left at hospital. I’ll be able to try them on during my next chemo session in three weeks.

They’re locked inside a cupboard on the ward. If I suddenly lose my hair then I can quickly go to hospital for some emergency hair.

Despite the icy headwear, I actually quite enjoyed this round of chemotherapy. At times it was even fun although I’m not sure I’m supposed to say that.

What made it different? Was it the hypnotherapy? Maybe that was part of the reason. It was certainly less painful.

I think though it probably had more to do with the great company. Okay and the cake they brought me. Also we were able to watch a film. Sorry James Bond but while you were busy killing any cancer cells, we were watching Batman take out his enemies.

The evil chemo cocktail slipped easily into my veins. You have various pouches of clear liquid. I was surprised each time that the machine started beeping to say the current bag was empty.

The chemo is light sensitive and it has to be hidden in what I think looks rather like a ‘modesty’ bag.

I reckon it wants to be covered up as it’s so bashful that it could well be saving my life.

After feeling good all day, the side effects from the contents of that bright bag haven’t yet kicked in. That will take a few days.

This time I’m even more prepared. I have my hypnotherapy trances to practise and stronger painkillers. Hopefully it won’t be so awful.

21 thoughts on “Wigging out

  1. You manage to be brave and smart and funny – all while having chemo…. Three cheers for you Helen and I hope you get some decent sleep tonight.

  2. Helen, glad to hear that things aren’t as awful as you expected, hope that you get some sleep and stay as pain free as possible.

    Love the idea of bashful chemo, how very british, i can imagine it approaching the cancer cells ‘excuse me, would you mind awfully if i eradicated you, no? how splendid’ .

    Sending all positive thoughts..

  3. It seems so brave to be writing about this whilst it’s actually happening, Helen. Thank you for helping me to understand what you (and a good friend of mine) are undergoing at the moment. The effects of the hypnotherapy sound fascinating: I hope it continues to sustain you.

  4. Hypnotherapy sounds fascinating – I’d love to hear about the experience. Maybe a future post . . . certainly I could have used something to calm my nerves during chemotherapy. Never even considered being hypnotized!


  5. I know appearances aren’t everything, but you look so well in the photo.

    I’m not sure how long the recovery process, and return to work take, but I’m looking forward to seeing you standing in the snow, freezing cold, at a motorway overbridge, reporting on roads closed, airports shut, no railways this winter.

    I think most reporters consider that to be the short straw, but it would mean you are back, and doing the job you love. Roll on winter I say!!!

    • Thanks Paul, oh yes roll on winter!! Can’t wait to be standing somewhere in the freezing cold. I’m sure my wig will help to keep me warm ;)

  6. You are a strong lady Helen, you are so right when you say you can get through this chemo as it is the way to get well, and beat the cancer once again. I love the pics, but thank goodness no one took any of me as all my hair fell out in 2 days!! My private wig was great, but haha is probably how I would describe my NHS wig, it looked a bit like a mop head! Goals are great, not sure how you are going to beat the last ones though.

    • Wow just two days that must have been a bit of a shock. Glad you managed to get a good wig, I’ll be doing my best to avoid the mop head look too!

  7. Enjoying reading your posts, Helen. Keep up the good the work. Glad the chemo wasn’t as bad this time.

  8. I did hear Trevor Sorbie being interviewed about how he styles wigs for chemo patients (I think for free) should it come to that…. alternatively I have 7 in my attic, one of which is an afro and another is an Elvis one. If this sounds appealing just let Bex Couper know I’m a friend of hers…. Caroline

  9. Helen you look so pretty in that top photograph. And only slightly strange in the second. Love you to bits clever girl.

  10. . . . and you look so good in the new colour cap, definitely you I would say, must be the spring/summer collection! Keep on going, it must be hard but we’re all waiting for you to return to the snow. No one else stands in a blizzard, smiling, reporting and looking quite so classy as you. xx

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