Cancer Confession: Shampoo

True Mom Confession:  This morning I washed my hair scalp peach fuzz with actual shampoo, because I missed the way it smells. 

Afterwards, although I know full well that it’s ridiculous, I added conditioner.  Because I missed the way that it makes me smell. 

Remember all those compliments girls get in high school and college about the way their hair smells?  This morning, I remembered them too. 

I was so young, and I took so much for granted then. 

Didn’t we all?


22 Responses to Cancer Confession: Shampoo

  1. Jan says:

    Yes, we took everything for granted way back when. I have upcoming appointments for a mammogram and with the surgeon for a lump in my breast. I tell myself I am not worried and it will be O.K. but….still. I have a boy to raise. I long for way back when when there seemed to be no worries at all. I’ll bet you do, too. Peace and hope.

  2. Stephanie says:

    Ive been reading still, but havent commented in awhile.

    This made me tear up as Im a shampoo/conditioner snob.

    Oh the things we take for granted

  3. Rose100 says:


    I, too, have been reading and cheering you on without commenting.

    A dermatologist once told me that you do not wash your hair, but actually, it is your scalp that needs to be cleaned. As for the conditioner, well, not ridiculous at all. I see it as aromatherapy 🙂

    Yes, it is the little things we take for granted, not realizing that they are actually big things in disguise.

    We’re all pulling for you.

  4. whymommy says:

    Thank you. Thank you for being here. And reminding me that I’m not completely nutty!

    Jan, I’ll email you personally too, but remember — even if your surgeon wants to do a biopsy, it’s uncomfortable but not painful (you’ll get local anesthetic) and 80% of biopsies are benign. 80%. Your odds are really good, my friend!

    But if it’s not, it will be okay too. Come back here and let me know either way, okay? I’ll be thinking of you and praying for a good result!

  5. juliepippert says:

    Rose took my words. Of course it’s not ridiculous. Caring for your scalp and treating yourself…aromatherapy. 🙂

    And oh yes, oh how much we took for granted in youth.

    Using My Words

  6. canapes says:

    I miss your hair too. You had and will have again, beautiful hair.

  7. People think I am mad that I wear makeup at home, even when I am alone.

    And I reapply my lipstick.

    Makes me feel nice.

    Just like smelling like nice shampoo and conditioner. I don’t think there is anything silly about that at all.

    Betcha you smell fabulous!

  8. whymommy says:

    Thanks! I’m happy to report that I had some of the prettiest smelling hair at chemo. 🙂

  9. amanda says:

    Not to always sound like Pollyanna, but I think looking back at the times before worry (and gratitude) are a gift. How wonderful to have existed in such a beautiful, airy bubble, flitting about enjoying life and smelling lovely.

    And, if I were you, I’d ask somebody for a Sephora gift certificate or some equally unnecessary and decadent thing as a treat.

    You have lost your hair, but not your desire or entitlement to pretty things. Go, flit, flirt and smell fabulous.

  10. K says:

    So, do tell – what was the fragrance? : )

    I’m all for good smells!!!

    I sometimes put conditioner in my son’s hair when I am giving him a bath. He doesn’t need it a bit. But I love the smell (lavender) when we are snuggling at bedtime. I could devour him via the nostrils.

    I, too, have an appointment about a pesky lymph node lump on Wednesday. Good luck with your apt, Jan.

  11. I confess to being a scent-a-holic, too… Once, I bought a bottle of conditioner simply because the smell immediately brought to mind a trip we once took to Hawaii… It is called Dynamite by a company called “Fudge” (could it GET any better than that??! Okay, maybe CHOCOLATE Fudge, but still…) and I keep it waaaay up on the tippy-top shelf of my cabinet, especially for “emotional emergencies”. It’s the ultimate smell-good-feel-good pick me up!

    My thoughts are with ALL of you ladies out there who are taking charge of your own health, and having your breast symptoms checked… Praying for all of you!

    xo CGF

  12. You have peach fuzz. 😉 Yay! And remember, if the ends split, you’ll have frizzy peach fuzz, so better to take care of it now.


    Honestly sweetie, you do whatever you want. Scent is sooo important in our lives. To this day, there are smells that instantly whisk me back to my Gramma’s house.

  13. Whymommy Susan. You are such a gift in my life. You are so full of gratitude. It inspires me. Here’s a meditation that reminded me of you.
    Lovingkindness With Children | A Meditation

  14. Emily says:

    I actually think it’s totally reasonable.

  15. Do that everyday. Doesn’t matter how much hair you have there. If it makes you feel happy, grab that.

  16. Gidge says:

    I have used products for far lesser reasons.
    I’d wash head to foot in it, if it made me happy.

    Hell, if I could find some of that GEE YOUR HAIR SMELLS TERRIC I think I’d send it to you right now.

  17. Alice C says:

    I can remember wishing you a day when you wondered whether to wash your hair. I am SO glad that day has come. I wish you many more days when you try out different shampoos and conditioners. Soon you will be worrying about hairstyles again! x

  18. Danielle says:

    Unfortunately, I think so many of us still take so many things for granted. But it’s those moments, like the one you had in the shower this morning, that are so precious…when we stop to relish the small things in life that bring us bits of joy. May you have many luxurious smelling, good hair days to come! And if shampoo makes you feel good, then I say buy gallons of it…swim in it. We all deserve to feel that good.

  19. whymommy says:

    Oh, my conditioner was never fabulous. Just Herbal Essences or Suave or somesuch. But it’s amazing how much difference it makes some days.

    One of the gifties that appeared in an early “chemo bag” from my friends was a carmel-corn scented body wash/shampoo/conditioner. Amazing, funny stuff. I have a hard time with smells most days (and don’t use scents usually now), but at least one of my houseguests uses it (and I’m not telling which one!) and says it’s fun and funky!

  20. Kim says:

    This made me laugh because I did the same thing! I bought baby shampoo because I have heard that we need to be careful with this new baby hair of ours. I felt completely ridiculous the first time I “washed my hair” with it, but it smelled good and felt so normal. I’ve been washing it with the shampoo a couple of times a week ever since and imagining that somehow it makes it grow faster. 🙂

  21. Ally says:

    I love the smell of conditioner. I’ve been taking it for granted.

  22. romi says:

    i wouldn’t have expected this confession to touch someone the way it touched you…obviously in a very bittersweet way! I’m glad you linked to it so I could find your blog. One of my closest friends was just diagnosed with breast cancer and I will send her here to read your inspiring posts…

    I’ll be checking in on you from now on!

    love and strength to you.


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