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Yesterday, my friend arrived to take me to have my hair shaved off. It was now time to face this next hurdle. On the short drive to the hairdresser, while sitting in the passenger seat, hairs were literally leaping off my head in droves so that by the time we arrived I was covered in hair.

I explained to the young woman at the Sharing Shed in Westgate that I had started chemotherapy and my hair was now falling out. I had bought my wig with me and I wanted her to completely shave my head. I sat in the chair and took a last look at myself in the mirror, trying to hold back the tears. Once she started I closed my eyes and kept them tightly shut until she had finished. My friend reassured me several times, telling me I had a beautiful head. But when I finally opened my eyes I did not recognise the old woman looking back at me in the mirror.

The hairdresser then put my wig on and gently started arranging the artificial hair while I struggled to get used to the person in the mirror. When she had finished, I tearfully thanked her. I went to the counter to pay the bill, but she would not take my money, and instead gave me a big hug. My friend then went and did a little shopping and while she shopped I walked around trying to see if anyone was looking at me funny. But nobody seemed to notice that I had a wig on. I slowly started to relax. Another milestone achieved.

However, this morning I found that I can’t cope with looking in the mirror unless I have my wig on.