From Hair to There

Queue Rod Serling:  You are about to enter another dimension.  A dimension not only of time and space, but of hair.  A journey into a wondrous land of strands.  You’ve just crossed over into… the Baldilocks Zone.  My apologies to those of you born after about 1970, for you are now wondering where the f you can get some of my mind-altering meds.  Trust me, your elders are catching my drift.  What follows is a stage by stage account of my mane throughout the past two years – a Timeline of Tresses, if you will:

Timeline 1

Timeline 2

Timeline 3

Timeline 5

Timeline 4

Timeline 7

Timeline 6*

Timeline 8

Timeline 9

Timeline 10

Timeline 11

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Timeline 12

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Timeline-14

Timeline -15

Prior to the madness, I had stick straight hair my entire life, so I’m still learning how to deal with the curls.  Not a bad thing to have to deal with.  Can I get an amen?

UPDATE:  My eyes are getting better and better as far as the Graft vs Host symptoms of redness, puffiness, crustiness, gooeyness and just plain ole gruesomeness.  I’m still probably a candidate for the follow-up frickin’ “laser” treatment, due to a little vision fuzziness.  Every once in a while I’ll get a yucky crimson patch on my cheek or chin, but they are occurring less and less, especially if I avoid heat and sun.  I recently visited my GvH specialized dermo, so she could check out my skin for pre-cancer (I’m now 10 times more likely to develop skin cancer) and GvH.  I have large irritated and itchy skin spots on my arms and legs, and one under my left boob, that Dr. J diagnosed as eczema.  GRODY!  I immediately had a flashback to a 1970’s ad about some treatment for eczema, seborrhea and psoriasis.  Remember?  Those three words will always be linked together in my mind and they will always take me back to the most heinous images.  I’m grossed out mostly by the name ~ the symptoms are really no biggie.  At my next appointment with Dr. Fantastic, I will most likely start my childhood vaccinations.  You may recall that the lifetime supply of vaccines I had prior to my transplant were wiped out when the chemo tanked my white blood cells down to 0.0 (Blutarsky’s GPA).   I was told that my first round of re-vaccinating would include the COHCP – City Of Hope Combo Pack of 7 separate shots 🙂  Bring it!

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Answering the call!

FANTASTIC NEWS!  My son, Rex just received notification that he is a potential match for someone in need of a bone marrow transplant!  The chances of him being asked to actually donate marrow are not extremely high, but he will probably be asked to give a blood sample for further match testing and go from there.  We are all very excited about the possibility of him having the honor of saving someone’s life, and I’ll keep you posted on what happens 🙂  Please consider joining Be The Match, so you, too could potentially be someone’s lifesaver!  www.bethematch.org

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I am a survivor of two extremely rare diseases, thanks to over 100 blood transfusions and ultimately, a bone marrow transplant. My blog, joselynsbrawl.com, chronicles my adventures through medical offices, operating rooms, clinics, transfusion centers, hospital transplant floors, victory celebrations, and finally my bucket list items – all with a humorous and sometimes profane twist. My goal is to inspire others not to give up on life or anything else, and to understand that it’s actually possible to enjoy any experience, even battling a life-threatening illness (or two).

50 thoughts on “From Hair to There

  1. hey joselyn.
    thanks for the beautiful pics………really. so happy all is well and you continue to heal and are able to resume a life of fun and adventure. we wish you all good things.

    caron .steve.dana.steven.

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  2. Jos,

    I love your curly hair and am so happy that your eyes are better.(Avoiding the sun would be good advice for me and all of us, too!). We are so excited about Rex and about you starting to get your vaccines! Love you and we are praying for you!

    Sent from my iPhone

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  3. Jos, It is so great to see you with those piggies again, and the curls look cool. Just think, you may be one of the only people who lived half their life with straight hair and the other with curls! Thinking of you always and sorry to have missed you at the annual Reyes parking lot farewell. I would be a donor, but when I volunteered to be a match for you, Todd laughed and told me they needed a much young guy. Go Rex! So glad to see you are back swimming with the sharks. Love Lynn and Carolee

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  4. Hey Jos…loved the hair photos and seeing beautiful you…with/without hair, with/without curls…your smile radiates a room or an ocean…xo

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  5. Isn’t hair amazing and how much it defines us? Your transformation from hair, baldness and hair again is a great documentation of what happens with chemo hair loss. Spot on girl! So glad to see you back with your adorable piggies with the new curl to them…adorbs. Of course my favorite “do” is the fluorescent pink Barbie braid on your 50th!
    Love you Nylesoj! TTF TOTT jae

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  6. Thanks for the update, love your piggies. Very exciting that Rex might be a life saver also. See you in The Land of the Trojans very soon.

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  7. Hair Schmair! What I see in all those photos is your beautiful smile – THROUGH IT ALL!!! You are a f*cking rockstar!!! XOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXO

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  8. You r amazing!! You turn each stage of your very difficult journey into such a positive. Blair and I loved the dog shot xxxxto you

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  9. Jos, thanks for always bringing the humor and the drive, the grit…..you put most of us to shame with our minor ‘issues’ of the day!
    YOU LOOK FAB…and have always had the MOST INCREDIBLE attitude around!!
    (I also loved the surprise of the dog)!

    Blessings of courage & joy!!

    Go Rex!

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  10. Seeing the hairline, or timeline for the mundane, really brought to light once again all you have been through. It is really miraculous to see the process from sickness to health told through your hair. You are freaking AMAZEBALLS! (evidently a new word in th Oxford ’14 online edition). Continued health, happiness, and hair raising adventures to you and your darling family 🙂
    Love you,
    Lucky Dan’s Mom

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  11. TMI is a good thing with you! Love reading what you post. It makes me laugh. Always still praying for you beautiful girl!!
    Love, Marilyn

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  12. HI JOS! You are beautiful with each new hairdo! So glad you are doing so well after all you have gone through. Love your blogs so we can keep up with your progress of recovery! Love from Helen and Jed

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  13. Wow that was literally a hair raising journey! If you’re gonna lose your hair you might as well have fun with it! Keep going strong no matter what color it is!

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  14. Joselyn, You rock ‘n roll big time girl! It’s all about the story and you have an amazing one. Loved spending time with you and Todd on our adventure to the House of Blues. Always thinking of you….XXOO Cathie with a “K”

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