Monday, September 15, 2104
Day 66 of 100 Days of Good Karma.
I went to a free workshop on makeup and wigs.
I’ve never worn a lot of makeup. I’m a powder, mascara and blush kind of girl, though I’ve worn lipstick and eyeliner a lot since I shaved my head.
But my eyelashes are starting to fall out, and I’m sure my eyebrows will follow.
So I went to the workshop hoping to learn eyebrow technique.
The workshop is offered through the cancer center and open to all cancer patients. The volunteer teaching the class was a make up artist and wig designer. He and his wife own a wig and mastectomy shop in Houston.
Everyone who signed up for the class was given a bag of make up and skin care products suited to their skin tone.
The bag was bigger than I expected.
There was everything you could think of in there. Facial cleansing wipes, facial moisturizer, concealer, foundation, mascara, eyeliner, blush, lipstick. Everything.
Our instructor told us that each product was a donation from the manufacturer and the makeup kits were valued from $350 to $400.
I was stunned. This was expensive stuff and they just handed it out.
The instructor walked us through how to use each of the products and spent some extra time drawing on eyebrows. It’ll take some practice, but when the time comes, I think I can do it.
Today’s silver lining: I am grateful to the workshop instructor who volunteered his time and to the companies who donated their products to help me feel more normal.
There were other cancer patients in there in various stages of treatment. Some were further along than I was, some just starting out.
One woman had one chemotherapy session under her belt. She asked me a ton of questions about when my hair fell out.
I tried to answer her questions but cancer treatments vary. She was on a totally different drug and treatment regimen than I was.
When I described my course of treatment she looked appalled.
“You do chemo every week?”
I just nodded. Her reaction made me uncomfortable and I didn’t need any help feeling like a freak.
But I wanted to help her. It wasn’t so long ago that I was the one worried about my hair.
I said, “You get to a point where the hair loss isn’t important. You just want the cancer to go away.”
Other people in the class voiced their agreement.
She backpedaled saying, “Oh I don’t know about that” and “You don’t know how I am with my hair”.
In the end I mentally wished her the best of luck in her journey and left her to deal with it on her own. I have enough problems of my own without adopting hers, too.
Another woman finished her treatment within the last year and the cancer came back in her liver and her bones.
Her story terrified me.
She was living one of my greatest fears: Going through this not just once but multiple times.
But I know it happens.
My friend Patti died in her second battle with cancer. She beat breast cancer only to have the cancer return elsewhere.
When I think of the cancer returning I have to remind myself that people do beat it a second time.
I also try and keep in mind something I heard Michael J. Fox say, “If you imagine a worst case scenario and it happens then you’ll have lived it twice.”
So I try not to borrow trouble and just deal with the hand I’ve been dealt today.
What’s your silver lining today? I love comments!