Thursday, November 10, 2011

We All Have Something

Standing there in my swimsuit I anxiously awaited the technician to come into the room. I had never had an airbrush tan done, but I wanted to have a little color done safely before Matt’s cousin’s wedding in Connecticut. So, doing something new like this and exposing my scars to someone I didn’t know was unbearable. I dreaded the thought of someone asking me what the scars were from and how did it all happened. *deep breath*

There was a knock at the door and a soft voice asked, “all ready?” My pulse quickened.

The woman that entered the room was stunning. She was a tall African American woman in her thirties with long straight hair and a gorgeously toned body. I instantly felt self-conscious. She moved through the room with confidence and poise--she was truly magnificent.

“You can go topless if you want,” she started in, “a lot of my customers do. Or if you want to wear the disposable thong that works, too. Whatever you are most comfortable with.”

Here came the cancer word vomit ... I felt it building up inside me surrounded with a heap of panic.

“I don’t want to alarm you, but I need to tell you something before we start. I have a lot of scars because I am a breast cancer survivor.”

The technician was incredibly attentive and sympathetic to my story. But to my surprise, she had her own.

“I have a two year old son. I had a hard pregnancy and gained over 80 pounds. They did a c-section. My stomach was such a mess with excess skin and scarring that my father said he would get me plastic surgery ... like a tummy tuck to get rid of the bad part. The plastic surgeon was bad and botched what was supposed to be my flat stomach. Now I have to live with this forever.”

She pulled up her shirt to expose the scarring and gaping sections of her stomach that still remain.

She continued, “You are so beautiful. Look at you. You’re a fighter and now have this healthy, curvy body. God is great and look what the doctors were able to do for you.”

The anxiety I felt coming into the tanning salon subsided and before I knew it we were laughing about her adding some color to my booty.

The experience wasn’t about comparing myself to someone else or her scars being worse than mine, but about understanding that we all have something. Maybe some more severe than others, but we have all been through challenges and perhaps don’t like certain things about our bodies. It is a personal journey of acceptance of one’s own self and loving who you are despite sickness or injury.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Pink Rocks the Runway

Being asked to participate in Pink Rocks the Runway has been one of the most fulfilling and fun events of my remission. Pink Jams! is an amazing organization that is local to Washington, D.C. and was started by the amazing Christa Floresca in honor and remembrance of her friend Jen.

I, along with 13 other survivors under the age of 40, had dresses designed by local designers. I was paired with the brilliant Ginger Carlin of Booshie Designs. There could not have been a more perfect pairing. Ginger and I were truly two peas in a pod. Her vision and creativity are awe inspiring and I would love to get to work with her again.

The evening of the event was emotional, but celebratory. Walking the catwalk and hearing the crowd roar and my friends and family cheer me on made the night so special. I felt like this was my moment. I did it. It took every ounce of me not to cry at each intimate moment I had with friends, family and even strangers.

Walking along side me were two of my girlfriends and sisters in survival, Jami (pictured center) and Liz (pictured right). Afterward, I found Matt and my family in the audience. People I didn’t know were coming up and hugging me and asking to have their photos taken with me. One woman even asked for my autograph. I was incredibly humbled by the love and togetherness felt from the event.

Christian Siriano, in all his fierceness, headlined the show and did not disappoint. I want all of his clothes. Behind-the-scenes Christian is very hands-on from the hair and makeup of his models to the actual clothing and lineup. He is quite a visionary.

That night $30,000 was raised and donated to Capital Breast Care Center in D.C. helping women get mammograms who otherwise would not be able to afford the imaging. I have always said that if my story can impact or help one other person then it is a story worthy of being shared. That feeling and drive is even stronger now. I hope to be invited back for other Pink Jams! events and perhaps down the road become a volunteer and continue to grow Christa’s vision and outreach.

Thursday, September 1, 2011


“Have you forgiven your body?”

This question has lingered in my mind for weeks now since I had dinner with one of my girlfriends. She told me a very personal story about losing her baby during pregnancy. After some time, she and her husband tried to have another child and she was not getting pregnant. It wasn’t until she went to an acupuncturist that she was asked the question: "have you forgiven your body?" She burst into tears as she realized the importance of the question. She was finally able to let the anger and guilt subside. And wouldn’t you know … she has a beautiful family now. Amazing grace.

We talk about forgiveness when it comes to our relationships, but what about our bodies? We are so terribly critical of ourselves, myself included. We get angry and embarrassed about baby weight and stretch marks ... but did we stop to thank our body for the ability to give life? Joint injuries stole our athleticism away at a young age and plague us with chronic pain ... but did we stop to thank our body for still having the ability to walk and ride a bike? Which left me thinking, had I forgiven my body for having cancer?

I spent several weeks thinking about the question and allowing myself to go back into that dark place of sickness and feel all those difficult feelings again. I looked back through my photos and reread my blogs and felt the anger, confusion and hurt boil back to the surface again. I HADN’T forgiven my body. Why should I??? I was only 26 years old when I was diagnosed.

Once the knee-jerk feelings settled, the anxiety subsided and the tears dried, I was able to think more clearly about how amazing my body truly is. My body beat stage-3 breast cancer. It bounced back from ten surgeries. Survived 18 weeks of chemotherapy without my blood count ever plummeting. It healed after six weeks of intense radiation therapy leaving me with third degree burns. It gave me the strength and mental capacity to work through the psychological pain of losing my breasts, being covered in 18 scars and dealing with body self-consciousness for the first time in my life. It gave me the courage to love unconditionally despite the fact that I no longer viewed myself as a long-term investment for another person. My body gave me a new appreciation for life and taught me patience and true compassion. My body is amazing and I am truly grateful and appreciative for the experience of learning to love myself.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

10 Lessons Cancer Taught Me

I found this article called ’10 Lessons Cancer Taught Me’ by Donna Davis on a senior care website of all places. As I read each lesson I found myself responding aloud, “yes,” “absolutely,” “couldn’t have said it better.” It is rare for me to lift this much of someone else’s text, but I honestly could not say what she did any better. I think Donna is brilliant and a gift. I hope her words inspire you as much as they have me.

1. There is no someday. There’s only now. There’s a story called “Precious Present” which talks about a mysterious man telling of an elusive present. The point of the story is that being “present” by enjoying the moments in your life is the best gift of all. It’s good to plan for the future, but remember to LIVE TODAY. Don’t put off playing with the kids, using your best china, doing all those things you want to do “someday.” We truly do not know what tomorrow brings. Be aware of what’s happening, really listen to others and trust your instincts. Your life can be so much richer by learning to be present even for just a few minutes each day.

2. Own and express your true feelings. For most of my life, I would do things I didn’t want to do. I always worried about saying no to others. When I got the leukemia I knew that the fatigue wasn’t just from the disease. It was also from 20 years of pent-up resentment for doing things and going places because I felt I “had” to. I’ve learned to express my feelings. Now I say no to things that I don’t want to do. But I also tell people I love them more often. I tell my kids “I’m sorry” when I’ve made mistakes (and I make plenty!) I talk to others about my fears, my depression (which plagued me for years) and my failures as well as my successes. Being honest has lifted a huge weight off my shoulders. Interestingly, in the process of becoming more direct, I’ve become kinder. There’s no resentment when you speak from the heart.

3. I’m not a victim. I choose how I react to situations. Sometimes people ask “Why me?” Except for a brief moment, I didn’t travel down that road. I knew there were lessons I needed to learn. Yes, some days just plain sucked with nausea and fatigue, but I also knew that many others have symptoms 1000 times worse than mine. When you’re open to the lessons, you can move through your situation so much easier and faster.

4. Take care of myself first. When traveling on airplanes we always hear that in case of emergencies to put on our oxygen mask first, THEN take care of others. That’s a major life lesson. If we don’t take care of ourselves first, then we have nothing to give others. I had excellent doctors, but I’ve learned that I need to know my body and what it needs. All aspects of our life are our responsibility. Get to know you. If you feel better after eating protein, eat it. If you need 8 hours of sleep a night, find a way to get it. You’ll function much better because that’s what YOU need…not what a book recommends. It’s the same with emotions (see #2). Speak from your heart. And spiritually, find the path that’s right for you. It all comes together to make a wonderful YOU, and then you can be there for others.

5. Ask for help. Sell the SuperWoman cape on ebay! Asking for help gives others a chance to share their gifts and love. Plus, you’ll weigh less because the “I have to do everything” cape is really heavy.

6. Watch your words and especially your thoughts. I believe that our “thoughts create.” With my cancer, I KNEW I was going to be cancer-free. But earlier in my life I was very critical, judgmental and negative. Watch your words and thoughts for an hour. Did you say or think thoughts like “I’m always tired,” “We can’t afford that,” “I could never do that”? If you keep thinking or saying those things, guess what shows up in your life? Yep…You are tired, you can’t afford that item and you’ll never do that. I challenge you to eliminate the negatives. Guard your words. They are powerful.

7. There is a reason for all things. Many times things happen in our lives and we don’t understand. We are a small cog in a much bigger picture. Just trust and stay positive. As you get older, you’ll smile at how you’ve weaved this beautiful tapestry called “My Life.”

8. Get rid of stress. Stress is toxic and it can lead to serious health problems – physically and emotionally. If you are in a stressful situation, GET OUT of it -- whether it’s an abusive relationship, a terrible job, or living in a place or city you don’t like. Stress eventually wins by wearing you out. So read #9.

9. If you don’t like your life, change it! This and #8 are easier said than done, but if you want a happier and healthier life, start making some changes. If you are thinking defeating thoughts, work on creating more positive affirmations. If you’ve always wanted to learn how to play the piano, start taking lessons. If you’ve always wanted your own home business, find something that sounds fun and start it! As the saying goes, “Life is like a buffet table. You can have whatever you want, but you’ve got to get up and go get it.” And go back and read #5 and ask for help from people you trust.

10. Laugh often. Don’t take life so seriously. All of us have challenges. Don’t get upset and angry. Laugh more and know that “This too shall pass.”

Source: Davis, Donna. ""10 Lessons Cancer Taught Me"" Senior Care Services and Information. Senior Care Psychological Consulting, 2004. Web. 25 Aug. 2011.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

An Unexpected San Francisco Treat

San Francisco Treat

I met the most amazing man. (I know that sounds so silly.) I know why I was meant to come to this PMI Conference in San Francisco. I have confirmed that I am meant to be doing the role I am doing. Everything my Dad ever said about managing people was true. And now I want to grow and eventually get my PMP certification post-masters. In addition, I have met someone who I instantly connected with, which I never expected.

His name is Jose (pronounced Joe-say) from Montreal. He is French-Canadian. He is here with his VERY pregnant wife and their two children. He is the GM of a startup in Montreal called Haka Solutions. My first day at the conference he told me, "Jennifer, you need to learn to disconnect sometimes and relax. There wouldn't be the need for project managers if projects were perfect." Ah, I'm not alone ... I felt validated.

Today my buddy and I sat together for our new session and then walked to lunch together. I was asking about his wife and babies (since they are out and about in SF during the day while he is in class) and in return, he asked if I want children. I paused and then, after some hesitation, decided to share my cancer journey. To my surprise his reaction was a smirk and then encouragement to continue sharing. He reassurend me that he would share his story when I finished.

Unbeknownst to me, he was diagnosed with stage-3 Hodgkin's at the age of 20 and was told he would never have children. He turns 40 this year and is expecting his third child next month ... a little girl. Just when he and his wife had started to consider alternative options to have a family, she got pregnant. I cannot believe I met him at a work conference. He is a new friend that I will have for a long time to come. I think I will send him an announcement when I have my first child ...

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Buh-bye Dark Cloud

Annual doctor’s appointment & blood work: Normal
Annual eye exam: Normal and now eligible for LASIK
Annual retinal scan: Normal—no signs of side effects from the Tamoxifen
6-month oncology check-up: Normal
6-month dentist appointment: Normal
3-month Pap: Normal

It’s been a LONG time since I have had normal test results. I don’t know what to do with myself. I guess I’ll finish my Masters, focus on getting stronger and healthier and plan my wedding.

It is nice not having a dark cloud following me around anymore.

This time, when I went to visit my oncologist, Dr. David Heyer, I took Matt with me. It was important to me that he meets Dr. Heyer; after all he is the man who saved my life. If Matt is going to marry me, I want him to understand that this will always be my reality. We can’t ignore it, or hide from it … we need to face it head on … together.

Dr. Heyer: “If this is completely out of line, please tell me.”
me: I smiled knowing exactly where Dr. Heyer was headed.
Dr. Heyer: “Do you two intend to have children?”
me: Without hesitation I replied, “Yes.”
Dr. Heyer: “Four years ago when all of this began I never thought it would be a possibility for you to get pregnant. I was certain that with the amount of chemo we were giving you that I would push you into menopause permanently.”
me: I interrupted, “Right, but I only missed three months and started right back again consistently every 28 days.”
Dr. Heyer: “I know, and it’s pretty remarkable, even unheard of. Now, in the past people worried that when a woman got pregnant that change in hormones could cause cancer to return. I am telling you that this assumption is NOT true. Getting pregnant will not give you cancer.”
me: “OK.”
Dr. Heyer: “Also, a woman with breast cancer WITHOUT lymph node involvement runs a risk of getting cancer later in life, so there would be a long gap between the first and second diagnosis. However, a woman with breast cancer WITH lymph node involvement, like yours, runs a risk of getting cancer within the first couple of years of remission. So, once we get you past a certain point, we shouldn’t need to worry as much. But you and I have decided it’s never coming back, right? We’re done with this.”
me: “Right.”
Dr. Heyer: “Jennifer, I see absolutely no reason why you can’t get pregnant. You have surprised me and beaten the odds on everything else. However, I want you to finish the Tamoxifen … it’s essential that you have a full 5 years.”
me: “I understand. So, how soon after I’m off the Tamoxifen can I start trying?”
Dr. Heyer: “That’s not really my area of expertise, so I’d defer to your Women’s Physician, but I’d say 3 months.”

Friday, April 15, 2011

The Eyes Have It

So, who knew that cancer could impact your vision!? I certainly didn’t until this morning.

I visited a new eye doctor today and expected to be treated like cattle … after all; this is The Eye Center that always has those iLASIK advertisements on HOT99.5.

With my new VSP insurance in-hand and a recommendation from my friend Kelli, I decided after two years of no eye exams to try a new practice and doctor. Diem Nguyen, O.D. was simply amazing. She spent time discussing my medical history with me and the side effects related to the chemotherapy, radiation, and the medication I am now on called Tamoxifen.

She did a normal exam, checked my contacts and vision, but then she did a medical exam of my retina. Apparently, a side effect of Tamoxifen is damage to the retina. She said that my vision was still 20/20 (with my contacts), nothing had changed, and my retina looked healthy. However, unlike a non-cancer person, I should have my yearly exam, but also a medical exam (covered by health insurance, not eye insurance), and have x-rays of my retina done. This way, they can compare over the years to make sure my retina is not compromised from the medication.

I will be going back to visit Diem Nguyen, O.D. next week to pick up my contacts and have x-rays of my retina done. She tells me that it doesn’t hurt and all they do is put drops in my eyes, but after several years of procedures and surgeries I still get a bit anxious. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

The good news is that I am a great candidate for LASIK surgery! It’s something I have thought of a lot over the last few years and perhaps it’s something I’ll have done in the next year or so. Makes me nervous (although everything does these days), but it’s something fun to consider doing for myself.


Thursday, April 7, 2011

I Hereby Adhere to No Funny Business

So here’s the latest … after consults with both my women’s physician Dr. Ivey-Crowe and my oncologist, Dr. David Heyer, I am going to start taking a prenatal vitamin. (I’ll wait a moment to let the awww’s and squeals of my loving friends run their course.)

Now before you get all baby-crazy on me and start monogramming onesies (love you, Kere!) the purpose for this is for three reasons:
  1. My body is lacking some vital nutrients from going through chemotherapy, so I take a lot of pills (multivitamin, C, iron, probiotics, etc.). Taking a prenatal vitamin will boost my vitamin and iron intake. Probiotics should help my digestive track resume balance since I suffer from horrible IBS attacks and nausea nowadays.
  2. It should make my hair, skin and nails look amazing for my wedding day. Let’s be honest, that’s reason enough.
  3. And lastly, IF I decide after two years to try and have children I will have given myself the best possible chance by getting really healthy with vitamins, nutrition and exercise. I will do my part as best I can and God-willing, Matt and I will have a family in the future. If not, we will do a lot of babysitting for our amazing friends.
    My oncologist, Dr. Heyer made sure that I was aware that I am his for two more years; meaning that I need to stay on the Tamoxifen for a full five years. I assured him that there would be no funny business. 
    (I think my mother has timed it all out that between coming off of the Tamoxifen at age 32 and my next surgery around the age of 40, I could comfortably have two children. At which point she will be retired and can provide daycare. You have to love the optimism of my family.)

So between both of my doctors and a little bit of research I have decided to try Trimedisyn. The reason for this is because it is all natural and has all the ingredients that I am missing. I’m going to sound like a spokesperson for a second, but most prenatal vitamins have increased folic acid, calcium and iron. Trimedisyn is packed with 19 other essential vitamins and minerals, 10 probiotics, CoQ10, DHA, ginger root, inositol, and choline. Ginger root eliminates morning sickness, but also nausea that typically accompanies both IBS and iron supplements. And after reading some reviews women are reporting their asthma and allergies significantly improving or disappearing completely. *fingers crossed*

I’ll keep you posted on how the Trimedisyn works.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Love After Cancer

Matt: “Are we going to be together forever?”

As we walked down the quaint streets of Killarney, Ireland Matt and I chatted while enjoying the street- lamp lit scenes of historic statues and a beautiful, old cathedral built back in the 1300s.

me: “I sure hope so.”

Although I had to admit, his weird nervous behavior and biting attitude was concerning over the last few days and the fact that he wouldn’t give me his jacket on the bus when I was cold was just plain strange. I was a bit aggravated with him to say the least.

Matt: “Why don’t we make it official?”

Matt had stopped walking and I felt the hand he was holding pull me back.
I turned and saw Matt on bended knee.

me: “Are you kidding?”

About a month earlier Matt had gotten down on his knee in the kitchen of our home which set my heart racing. Since Matt is over a foot taller than I am, he occasionally will get down on his knees to hug me in a joking manner, so I figured this was another one of those silly moments. Since I had just kissed a statue of Johnny O'Leary (renowned Irish accordion player in Killarney) and sang Rihanna’s ‘Umbrella’ to a statue of Jesus, I figured this funny gesture made perfect sense for us.

Matt: “No. Will you marry me?”

Matt pulled the little square box from his jacket pocket and opened it to reveal my mother’s engagement ring. It just so happened at that very moment an old Irish man drove by seeing Matt’s proposal. He continued circling until he saw that I responded, “Of course” and hugged Matt. The old man began honking his horn wildly and giving us repeated thumbs-ups.

We walked a little ways and once the proposal set in and I asked to sit on a bench outside a row of shops and pubs.

me: “You know, I did this before once and it didn’t go so well.”
Matt: “I know.”
me: “So, I’m sorry if I didn’t respond right …”
Matt: “Jennifer, relax. We are still just Matt and Jen. Nothing has changed other than I have given you a ring promising you that I will always love you. We will go home at the end of the week to our little condo with our little dog … we are still the same people.”
me: “I know. But, you know I’m really sick …”
Matt: “Jennifer, I know. Whether I have 2 years with you or 20, it’s more time than I would have without you. You are perfectly imperfect and I want to be with you.”
I began crying … the anxiety melted away.
me: “I know you know all these things, but I hope you understand I just needed to say that.”
Matt: “OK. Is everything OK now?”
me: “Yes. Let’s go find a pub and celebrate.”

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Being Awakened at 30

Me: “Matt, I just want to say something that I’m thinking without judgment or any insinuation. OK?”
Matt: “Um, OK.”
Me: “I’m turning 30 this year.”
Matt: “WHAT? You’re going to be 30?”
Jen: *smiles* “I’m trying to be serious. Just let me get this out.”
Matt: “You’re no fun. OK.”
Jen: “I just realized that I am only on my Tamoxifen for another two years.”
Matt: “I didn’t know you were a Tamoxipro.”
Jen:Tamoxifen. It’s an estrogen suppressor … a pill I take every night.”
Matt: “Um, OK. So that’s a good thing, right?”
Jen: “Just let me finish … it’s both good and bad. It means that, if we want, we could try to have children in two years when I’m 32. Not that I am implying that we have to …”
Matt: “I get it, Jennifer, you don’t have to peddle.”
Jen: “… OK, well, it also means that the chances of a reoccurrence are greater. It also means that I need to talk to my oncologist about other proactive treatments. I don’t know how to feel about going off the medicine. I guess mixed.”
Matt: “Well, if you want to try and have children we can always try and if you don’t that’s OK, too. If you still want a family, there are plenty of babies that need a loving home. We’ll do what’s best for us when the time comes.”
Jen: “I just can’t believe it’s been three years. I guess it just surprised me when I started thinking about turning 30 and what that meant treatment-wise.”
Matt: “I understand.”
Jen: “That’s all I wanted to say. No insinuations, OK? We just better travel our hearts out the next two years.”

I remember shortly after I was diagnosed with cancer my oncologist told me that there was no time to waste freezing my eggs because the cancer was too aggressive. We needed to start chemo within the week. I was sad and angry. My mother said to me, “Are you upset because the chances of you having children are slim, or because something is being taken away from you?” Such a wise woman. At the time I lashed out at her in anger rambling about always wanting to be a mother, but looking back I know it is because I was being told that I couldn’t have something. I was infuriated. I hadn’t even thought of having a family, but someone telling me I couldn’t (or that the chances were significantly less) enraged me.

This is such a weird statement to make, but it wasn’t until Matt and I decided to raise our puppy, Jasper that a strange maternal feeling swept over me. (I don’t mean to compare my dog to your children—I know logically the two are significantly different, however it was an emotion and instinct I was not accustomed to feeling.) I don’t know what the next few years hold for me, or what my body is even capable of at this point. I do, however, know how strong my spirit is and I am open-minded to the possibility of happily ever after … and even a family.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

My Crippled State of Mind

The pain shot from the outside of my left breast up to my shoulder as I pulled myself out of bed. My breath escaped me. I cranked up the heating pad and laid back down in bed. My tears soaked my hair to my cheeks and left tiny puddles on my pillow case. Jasper became anxious and whimpered running over to lick my face. My little peanut knows me all too well. He’s seen this time and time again.

Some people’s joints act up when the weather changes in an arthritic-nature. When the air pressure changes drastically, I collect fluid where my lymph nodes have been removed and swell to the point of excruciating, piercing pain. The fluid is pleuratic in nature and will move from my lower back, to my breast and then my shoulder and then move again—all up-and-down my left side.

I managed to pull myself together and stepped into the bathroom. I stood facing the mirror in my long-sleeved white Alpha Omicron Pi Alumni shirt that my parents bought me for Christmas and my underwear. I lifted my shirt and looked at my chest to see if I noticed anything different. Running my finger tips along the edge of my left breast I winced in pain. I needed a second opinion.

Matt was sitting in the office writing a paper for class. I approached him saying, “Matt, can you to do me a favor and look at my boobs?” He turned and faced me smiling a little deviously and responded, “Is this a trick question?” After Matt reassured me that the redness was just a result of the heating pad, I laid back in bed with Jasper. It didn’t take long for my jaw to lock and the rush of anxiety to come over me again. I began to shake and Jasper whimpered softly tucking his nose beneath my neck. 

Matt came into the bedroom sensing something was wrong, catching me in a panic attack. This caused me to cry even harder.

“I’m scared.”
“Jennifer, take a step back and don’t jump to conclusions. This happens once in awhile, you know what it is.”
“But it’s miserable.”
“I know, but it’s going to be ok.”
“I’m mentally crippled. I don’t want to be like this the rest of my life.”
“Babe, it’s all going to be ok. Trust me. Just relax.”

Sure enough, just a day later the pain and swelling has subsided. Life has resumed as normal. But I know when the weather changes again I will spiral into my crippled state of mind. My good friend Stephanie put it best in a message to me, “Just because the “cancer” is gone doesn’t mean the cancer is gone.” I still can’t seem to escape it.

Monday, February 14, 2011

My Safety Blanket

Jennifer: I am trying to find a place to donate my wigs.
It is a really hard thing for me to part with them.
I want them to go to a cancer patient.
Matt: That’s good.
Why don’t we take a trip to a hospital and do it in person or something?
Would that mean more?
Or be more meaningful?
Jennifer: Um, well, there was a "wig bin" at my oncology office.
I may contact them and see if they know of any patients that are having financial issues or who are having a difficult time finding a wig.
Matt: Yea
That works too.
Jennifer: I don't know.
I am just weird about it.
I feel like if I get rid of them the cancer will come back.
Matt: No baby.
That’s not true.
Jennifer: I know in my head that it's not true, but I can’t help but feel this horrible anxiety about giving them away.
They were like a safety blanket for so long.
It was like they hid the sickness and I could be normal.
And if I get rid of them my hair will fall out again and I won’t have my disguise.
Matt: Yea.
Everything is going to be ok baby :)

… and to this day I make the effort to research homes for my beautiful wigs, but I still find a reason not to part with them. They continue to keep me safe.