Only in Her Thirties

I’d never been to a chemotherapy session before today. American movies make chemotherapy treatment look like a visit to the spa – comfortable chairs, plenty of magazines, attentive nurses and other women to talk to.

Not here. The hospital I was at has no special section for cancer patients. They’re assigned a solemn room just like any other patient. Taboo and privacy restricts the development of support groups among the women enduring treatment.

Lady number three had the company of her mother – a strong Italian woman who couldn’t look at her 38-year-old daughter’s face as she took off her wig for the photo.

The cancer was not genetic (similar to the other women who participated in this project). She has two beautiful daughters who are too young to comprehend what their mother is going through, but bright enough to notice the signs of something wrong. Rather than keep them in the dark, lady number three sat with her 5-year-old (the older one) and explained why mom was sick and losing her hair. “Cancer” is too scary a word to tell a child, but it is important to be open with children when something like this happens.

**Our wig stand will be spending the next few weeks by her side. Chemotherapy treatment for lady number three ends May 31, 2010 and we wish her a successful, healthy recovery.


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12 thoughts on “Only in Her Thirties

  1. mirellamccracken says:

    Great Great Blog!!!!
    I found you on Lorena’s blog and I am gonna repeat what I wrote to her:
    I spend only one session of Chemo with dad, when he was fighting cancer (he won and recovered).
    IT was the most difficult time for me. I had a tantrum and took it on the nurses and doctors….
    As bloggers, sometimes we write a post and we wonder if it is going to be interesting to our readers, and guess what? We find out that this is exactly what they want to read because they are going through the same thing!!
    I come from a family of people who have cancer and I am interested in all the articles about it!
    Keep raising awarness!
    Thank you!
    Mirella

    Like

  2. Kitouti says:

    Thanks to all of you for this wonderful support. Indeed this is what got me going on, the support of all people who heard about my condition. It kept my spirit up and helped me in the hard moments I had to go through. I just had my 4th chemo cycle still have 2 to go and then I guess I’ll feel free again !
    I hope others will read this: honestly it is very important to try and put things back in their context…telling people about your problem helps a lot because you have to explain it out loud, then you realize that you can handle it🙂

    Like

  3. Lorena says:

    Thank you Kiki for writing and opening up to us🙂 You are an inspiration for other ladies going through the same thing and your strength shows so clearly.. God bless you during this difficult time.

    Keep smiling your beautiful smile and let me know if there’s any way I can help x

    Like

  4. mirellamccracken says:

    It takes lots of courage to do what you are doing! I know the Lebanese society and the shame they feel to even pronounce the word “cancer”

    Keep talking about it, and you will be the winner!!
    Cancer is 20% the disease and 80% emotionally painful !

    Like

  5. Samira says:

    Meedo should wear the next wig!!! Please let us know when the next event will be taking place🙂 I want to be part of this too!

    I love your blogs😀

    Like

  6. Lorena says:

    Mirella: You’re so right. The more we talk, the stronger we become. It’s true of any problem – health or mental.. It’s too bad here cancer is still taboo. Patients hardly interact with other patients and it’s a shame. They could really help each other..

    Thank you so much SamSam🙂 I love you AND your blog!!

    Next wig soon. You’ll be among the first to know.. Just gotta figure out the right event. So far it’s been Cotton Candy parties, but time for something different. Any ideas?

    Like

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  9. Facing Cancer Together says:

    My thoughts go out to lady number three as she pushes forward. Please keep sharing these stories, Lorena, and letting women know they are not alone. Cancer is devastating in many ways, but one things it should strengthen is support and compassion. Great post. ~Catherine

    Like

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