Fuzzy Chemo Hair

by Christie Perkins

Technically I shouldn’t have wished for it.

You see my brother has this dog. It’s a very sweet dog. However, I’ve never snuggled it because I’m allergic to dogs and cats. But, claiming it was hypoallergenic, I gave in and scratched behind her ear.

And, immediately we became friends… and I fell in love with the dog.

So, here I am, watching the dog with a gamut of kids around it. They are all scratching her belly, behind her ear and neck and her eyes get all droopy, dazed; glazed. I think she is actually smiling.

Poor dog. Has to stand there all adorable looking and the kids are magnetized by her irresistible cuteness.

And that’s where I went wrong. For a brief moment I wished that I could be a dog (minus the dog food, of course).

You see, my kids and husband think that I get everything I wish for. If I say, “Hm, a treat would be nice” and a mysterious knock at the door grants my wish. Ok, so maybe a few times it’s happened but they are convinced I just have to say it and it’s done. They constantly beg me to ask for a million dollars. I tell them, “No, we don’t need it.” Then I chuckle. They really think it would appear if I asked for it.

Funny kids.



Anyway. Back to the dog wish. How would it be? Constant head and body massages daily. Hm? Only in a perfect world. For a brief moment in life I wanted to be the dog.

But somehow the universe hears my wish and swishes a silvery white lined kiss on my head. No literally. There’s silver hair everywhere. Yay. Yay as in whoop-de-doo-dah. My new estimated age rounds to 80. My new medication (targeted therapy) eats my pigments, apparently. Why can’t it eat my pig guts instead? Someone seriously needs to rewire these meds. I have a list of complaints. But, I’ll save that for another day. So, any way I have this white fuzzy chemo hair.

So somehow this silver lined fuzz mesmerizes my 7 year old. And that’s when I start taking on characteristics of the family pet.


Loving My Hair (ahem… the kid not me)

No one loves my hair more than my 7 year old. I find mysterious notes on my phone about his infatuation with my hair, and he is awed by the finger in the light socket look. He genuinely loves my hair. He even loved it when he was just 3 and it was growing in the first time I went through chemo (although it was brown then). He bypasses me in the kitchen and he can’t resist his feelings for my hair, “Mom, I love your hair.”


It melts my heart. I hate the crazed old scientist look, but he absolutely- from the bottom of his heart- loves it. And when someone loves something about you that even you can’t love, there’s an immediate flow of sunshine. Love in it’s purest form.

It’s not long before he’s magnetized to the fuzzy topped buzzed mop. And suddenly I’ve turned into a dog.

Wish granted.


Good Ole’ Dog Days

So, here I am, watching tv and nearby fingers can’t resist feeling the fuzzy head. Tiny fingertips circle my head. He has me on a strong leash, I’m not moving anywhere, not even for a treat. It’s not so bad being the family dog. I’m glad they let me sit on the couch and eat real food.

Seriously, cancer has it’s perks. I get my head scratched daily these days.

On Sunday I had a gamut of kids around me (ok just my 2 littlest ones- maybe not a gamut but it was 1/2 of the genetic counterparts that I own). They were all scratching behind my ear, on top of my head, and playing with my fuzzy neck. My eyes were all droppy, dazed; glazed. I think I am smiling but I’m too dazed to know for sure.

Poor me. I have to stand there all adorable looking (????) and the kids are magnetized by my irresistible fuzzy chemo hair cuteness. (Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this paragraph is not the opinion of the writer. No way. They reflect my kids over infatuation with fuzzy chick hair.)

I kid you not. I’m in dog heaven for about 30 minutes. And suddenly I hear them say, “Mom, we’re hungry. Can we get some breakfast?”


Are you kidding? I’m busy here. My slumberish eyes jolt open. If I misuse this power I might not get them back. I come up with another plan. I didn’t mean no, I meant just not yet. But seriously, why on earth would eating be any better than this? I just can’t figure it out. But, I give in, “Just 10 more seconds,” I beg.

I know you’re not supposed to give into the dogs begging but they do. Good boys.

“One…” Each second gets a good ten seconds. “Two…”

“Mom, you’re counting really slow.” Shoot, they know I’m dragging this out. The intellect of these children gets me in trouble. I just want to make sure that each second gets it’s full equal opportunity.

Yeah. That’s it.

And at the count of 10 I morph back into the white-spiked crazed scientist looking Mom. Until tomorrow. Or until I need a little leverage…


Later That Day

Pretty soon the hair becomes the reward. I hear my 11 year old mother my 7 year old, “If you don’t do your chore you don’t get to play with mom’s fuzzy hair.”

What? Wait, no.

I would never take that reward from him. Are you kidding me. I chuckle. And, I make the rules around here and if you don’t do your chore you’ll have to do an extra one… hm, which might be attending to the family dog. Good idea. Good idea.

It’s not so bad you know, fuzzy white irresistible hair.

So, next time you wish for something just know that it’ll be misshaped into something far different than you imagined. But, also know that there’s certainly perks to every misfortune. Some kind of gain for every affliction. It may not be golden brown hair sprinkled with red highlights blowing in the wind. It might be granny white but it will come with daily head massages. It may not be running down a basketball court with sweat dripping and basketballs swishing the net. It might be a life of couch cushion indentations that come with many insightful impressions. It may not come with balloons, sunshine, and confetti. It might look like explosions, clouds, and baked on spaghetti. It may not be the life or situation you chose…

It’ll be so much better.

Find the one thing in your life that isn’t going right and just open your eyes to see how this very thing is helping you in some small way. Maybe, just maybe, it’s helping you get a wish you didn’t realize you wanted. Pin point it, then let it be the perk to a better life. If you can change it, by all means, do so. If not, find what gifts it’s giving you.

Have a better day.


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7 thoughts on “Fuzzy Chemo Hair

  1. You make the CUTEST puppy!!! 😉 I am incredibly inspired by your ability to take a difficult circumstance and turn it into a ray of sunshine and find the gift and blessing in the situation. Love you!!!

  2. You my dear friend are so awesome and inspirational. Your family loves you very much and you are one awesome Mom and wife and friend.
    I love this beautiful story, I don’t know how you do this, you are so beautiful and amazing and that white hair will be very striking on you!! You always bring a smile to my face when I read your. messages. You are so talented and give so much love to those around you. So proud of you and your writing, thanks my dear friend for being you and giving a shining light to so many others, you are an Angel. Love you very much!

  3. I absolutely love this! The only thing that could’ve made it better is if you would’ve put a picture of your white hair on it! I love to imagine your children surrounding you, playing with your hair. What an amazing mom you are! And what great kids you have! You are lucky and they are lucky. You are both equally lucky. 🙂

    • That totally was the plan but my camera was dead and I couldn’t find my charger… and since I was on a deadline I just skipped it. Maybe in another post. But honestly, I wasn’t too upset about not showing off my crazy hair 😉

  4. I am doing a report on you Christie because you inspire me. So if you could send me some things you say a lot. plus some information about your cancer?

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