Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A letter to my fingernails

Worst fingernail is the
middle one. Coincidence?
© kittelberg writes

Dear fingernails, eyelashes, eyebrows,

Evidently, you didn't get the memo. I've completed chemo, four weeks ago in fact. My hair did get it and somehow I thought you were included, or at least cc'd with my medical update.

This means you, fingernails, can stop turning yellow and threatening to fall off.

I've been diligently clipping you short and wearing fancy rubber gloves while washing dishes. I get that you haven't felt up to par, particularly on the right side where my chemo IV went in.

But last night, one of you on the left side decided to try to sneak off while I was unplugging the bathtub. Really? What more do you want from me?

Sans makeup.
© kittelberg writes
With makeup.
© kittelberg writes

While we're at it, lashes and brows, feel free to start growing back any time. I get that you've gotten used to falling out over the past couple of months. But frankly, you're cramping my style. You're making me look like a cancer patient as I near the end of treatment with just 16 radiation sessions to go.

Luckily, my dear friend and Juggernauts teammate Chrissy bought me Quo's Must Have Brows kit before brows began evacuating the premises.

With the help of the fantastic Look Good Feel Better volunteers, I learned how to fill in my brows and not look like a drag queen. (No disrespect to drag queens, just not the look I go for in the daytime!)

The head takes the lead.
© kittelberg writes

The Look Good Feel Better makeup artists also taught me how to apply eyeliner to avoid unneeded tugging on delicate lashes, and to fill in the empty spaces to give the illusion of having a full set of lashes.

So, fingernails, brows and lashes, it's not me, it's you. Stop being stubborn, and follow the lead of your associate on the top of my head who is making a comeback as evidenced by the peach fuzz on my pate.




  1. Hey Lori - I'm almost a year out of chemo and my eyelashes still fall out all at the same time. So half the time they are nice and thick and the other half they are patchy and short. Sheesh - the things they don't tell you! Congrats on being almost done rads. Such a hassle to go every day.

    1. Seriously? What's with the eyelash thing? I do a double-take when I pass my reflection if I'm not wearing makeup. Waiting for radiation to start, but only 16 sessions (I was expecting at least 20) - have to have another CT scan first, apparently I have to do a breathing test to see if holding my breath will keep the radiation further away from my heart. My husband was thrilled to hear that.

      Wishing you consistently thick, beautiful lashes, and more importantly, consistently good health!

  2. I have NO idea is this works for post Cancer nail assholes BUT, putting D Drops (like the kind you give babies) onto your nails is a really great way to help them strengthen so, you could give it a shot?

    Maybe you should get those semi permanent fake lashes as a treat when the radiation is done...or are you not supposed to glue things to our lids?

    1. Ooh, that's a good idea since vitamin D is also supposed to be good for preventing cancer/recurrence.

      They mentioned fake lashes at the Look Good Feel Better thing I went to. The only downside they said is potential for infection, but by the time I'm done rads, I should be well past that whole infectiony stage I'm thinking. If they're still sparse by then, I may have to look into it. Thanks, Babe!