Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Radiation - Hair III

At our Tuesday appointment, Dr. Yung explained in more detail about the radiation process and hair loss.

The radiation I will be given is "focal" with a margin of 2cm around where the tumor was taken out. A patient usually only loses hair in the location of the radiation. Not ALL over. Sometimes it is permanent. They cannot tell when it will be a temporary or permanent hair loss.

I truly had mixed emotions with this news. I was actually willing to be bald. Sounds WACKY, I know. I was looking foward to seeing what color and texture my hair was going to be after all the treatment. I was hoping for more curls. It was some excitement for me in all this cancer junk.

Looking back, I really believe that going bald was a test of my trust. Specifically my trust in God. It reminds me of Abraham & how God wanted to see if he would trust Him with his own son, Isaac. (Genesis 22)

Now I need to adjust my hair plans AGAIN. Having cancer - is a real test. A test of my trust, will, etc. aka: MY plans!

On this coming Tuesday the 12th we will finalize all the hair questions with the radiation oncologist, Dr. Simpson at Barnes /Siteman Cancer Center. Please pray that the loss will not be permanent and the regrowth will be identical to my existing hair. No odd curls & color just at the tumor site. Agghhhh!

Radiation will begin sometime prior to Christmas lasting 6 weeks M - F. We will know more details after our consultation with Dr. Simpson.

hair or no hair, that is the question - kate


Anonymous said...

Dear Kate,
I love that you have not lost your sense of humor! I am a firm believer that humor is not only very healthy, it also makes hard stuff more bearable, and you are a great example of how we can choose to see the light side of even the worst situations.
I'll be praying about your "hairy" situation!
Love, Tiffani Gibbs

aj said...

Dear Kate,
Its been too long since blogging last and I just wanted to let you know we are praying for you. Have a safe trip and enjoy the warmer weather while you are there.

AJ, Melissa and Joey

Anonymous said...


I can't really think of anything amusing to say about your potential hair loss! I have racked my brain and come up with several other situations where people I know have developed patches of baldness, but they were all boys, so it's not much help. Plain and simple, it stinks that you will have to deal with that.

I wanted to tell you that Larry was at your house yesterday assembling the bunk bed, and he said Stuart was being absolutely ADORABLE. He and Stuart played catch together in the basement, and apparently Stuart was very enthusiastic. It really touched Larry, surrounded as he is by females in our household, and I wanted you to know that your sweet baby really melted Larry's heart yesterday.

Have a safe trip home and enjoy your reunion with the kiddos!

Erika Byars

Anonymous said...

Kate...What about the oral chemo? Does that have the side effect of hair loss? I was just curious. I know all the treatments are different and with that all the side effects are different as well. Not from personal experience, but I have an idea of what you mean about looking forward to going bald. I must admit that every time I see a bald person I stop and say a quiet prayer for them and I also feel a great degree of admiration for them in their personal battle. One deserves that if he/she has to go through all the "C stuff". I know many people wear wigs by choice...personally, I think the head wraps are so much more elegant and meaningful. Also, the wigs won't keep your head warm and they are my mom and friends have told me. If you should desire that, I know of two highly recommended places. Who knows, you may have a whole new look after this. You will always be beautiful!! Best of luck with the hair issues as they pop up!! jennifer

Anonymous said...

Dear Kate,
I am a reader of your blog because my son is going through brain cancer too. I have written once becuase I am so curious about your visit to MD Anderson as we will be traveling there as well. I am curious though, you mentioned that your radiation that is "focal" can be done in your area. Is it the Proton Radiation? That is why we are going. I am very interested in your story and praise God for your endurance and strength every day. By the way, my son is bald and he is very hansome, I am sure that whatever will be will be for you hair and God will make you beautiful just the way you are.
Judith in NC

the Bakers said...

As we just got back into town after losing power for a week I am praising God for DSL. While we were still praying for you during our excursion to Illinois, I was frustrated that I couldn't keep up with the details of your trip to Houston. Dial-up really is ssslllloooowww and because they pay by the minute, I chose to just pray in the Spirit. It's great to read that the peace I felt about your trip was because He had already provided in so many wonderful ways. I am so glad to hear of the results. I am also glad to be able to be up to date again so that I can think I know how to pray for you. The song that kept going through my head each time I prayed for your family is Forever God is Faithful..."Forever God is faithful! Forever God is strong! Forever God is with us! Forever, forever." May Emmanuel - God with us - continue to be so evident to you and your family - forever!


Matt said...

Kate, I think that you should go with the full hair treatment and hope for the best. I think that it will grow back in darker with more of a wave to it (not quite curly but with definite texture).

If it doesn't I will buy you a day at your favorite St. Louis Day Spa!

See you the 24th,


Aimee said...

Dear Kate and Dave-
I am so very blessed by your honesty and personal intimate reflections of what God is teaching you during this time.
You remain in my thoughts and prayers.
Yours in Christ-
Aimee Wiggers Kuzemka
Springfield, Missouri

Laura Joback said...

Hey, you!
I just came back from a short (15 minute or so) excursion to Walgreens. I was ahsolutely ATTACKED by my son when I arrived home: "Mommy, where WERE you," "Mommy, are you coming UP?" (from the basement), "Mommy, hurry!" "Mommy, will you read me this book?" "Mommy, will you play hiding?" I cannot imagine the chaos that awaits you with THREE boisterous boys anticipating your arrival from Tay-has! And your trip was MUCH more than a 15 minute excursion!
I'm with ya' thinkin' 'bout the hair dilemma...remember: bald is beautiful (ask Mike), minimal hair is also attractive (ask Elijah), patchy hair is do-able (ask some of my patients with certain pestilences). Did I ever tell you about Captain Telogen? Well, here goes: you may have heard in your doctors' appointments about hair loss and regrowth. Basically, there are 3 phases of hair growth: anagen, catagen, and's growth phase, resting phase, and (sigh,...big sigh)...death phase. We had a classmate in vet school who was, well, quite q-ball bald, and we, not so kindly, dubbed him "Captain Telogen" (once again: the death phase of hair). When he would walk in the room, we'd Dah, Dah, DUMMMM!! CAPTAIN TELOGEN!!!! I have since matured and would NEVER be so cruel to you, mah de-ah! We're going for Princess Anagen, keeping those babies in their growth phase! I'm ROOTING for you (sorry for the, never mind, I'm NOT sorry, it was kind of funny!) Love ya!

Lisa Mann said...


You are SO getting it, and that is so awesome. There is power in worshipping Him in the middle of and in spite of the trials. Praising God with you!

Prayers and blessings to you and Dave and the boys.

Much Love,
Lisa Mann from EFree