Heads up

I might not need to just yet but I’ve taken to wearing a headscarf.

Right now it’s more to hide the greasy hair that I’m not supposed to wash and to stop it from blowing away in the wind.

Luckily I’ve already got plenty to choose from. One of my flatmates is a fashion designer and thanks to her I’ve managed to build up quite a collection.

They also keep my bald patches properly covered. Since my last post I’ve discovered another one near my fringe.

I’m actually quite enjoying wearing headscarves. They remind me of being back in the former Soviet Union. Over there they’re much more popular.

This is one of my favourites. It was bought from a stall in a Kiev underpass. For my Moscow friends, I’m sure you’ll agree it’s one that Masha Headscarf would be proud of!

I’ve realised that there’s an unexpected silver lining to all this headscarf wearing. It’s not that I’m being stopped in the street to read a few palms.

No, wearing a headscarf has a kind of cancer chic to it. I think it makes me look a bit more like I may be sick.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I want to appear like I’m going through cancer treatment. It’s just that right now I’ve got the opposite problem, I have plenty of hair and a rosy complexion and so I look well.

For the most part this is great. But I’m easily the youngest patient having chemo. Even mum is younger than most of the patients. I don’t think that at hospital I’m always seen as someone who’s very ill.

Looking fighting fit when you feel like rubbish has other difficulties. The chemo means my immune system is pretty pathetic and I should avoid public transport. On the odd occasion that I do get a bus or a train I really need to sit down.

Most people do move if you ask them but it would be much easier if I didn’t look so healthy. I don’t have the energy to explain to random strangers sat in the priority seats that I’m having treatment for cancer.

You can already get “baby on board!” badges, I’d like to one that says something like, “cancer on board!”

Or perhaps to be more accurate, “I might not look like it but I’m having chemotherapy and still recovering from major surgery so please let me have your seat as I’m so exhausted that I might collapse at any minute.”

Not sure that would all fit onto a badge so instead I’ll be sticking to the headscarves.