My first ever trip to the barber’s

Fiona Welsh on her battle against breast cancer

SOMETHING I never thought I would ever say is I have shorter hair than my man – well actually, I can say I have no hair whereas he does. On Saturday we both went to the local barber’s shop.

I wanted to go to a barber’s as they are used to shaving heads and I didn’t need to book. Not like ladies’ hairdressers – everyone knows everyone’s business as the chairs are so close together and us ladies do like to be nosey.

My boyfriend went first for his trim because I knew as soon as it was my turn I would just want to get home to inspect my newly-bald head.

While I was waiting, a chap came in with his young son. Having this little boy there meant I had to be that little bit braver, and it gave me enough courage to just get on with it. I didn’t even shed a single tear, actually I managed to laugh at times.


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I had taken packets of tissues as I really had expected to cry. The whole experience of having my head shaved was filmed, at my request, as I want to have reminders of this whole experience so that I can look back one day and say I did that, I actually coped and did it!

I am pleased to say I have a pretty bald head, but the weather is way too cold to be showing it off in public. Hats are my new best friends now.

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Whether it was due to a lack of hair, I managed to get myself a cold (or maybe it was sharing a packed cinema for the new James Bond film).

It’s only a cold – loads going around, I know – but my cold meant there was a chance the second chemotherapy treatment couldn’t have gone ahead due to my immune system being low.

At one stage on Monday they said to delay it, but I had worked myself up for this day being my second treatment, and had so wanted to tick one more treatment off. An urgent blood test was needed and I was pleased to be told my body was not showing any signs of defeat from the cold and I was allowed my treatment.

One major plus point this time round – I have managed to control the sickness.

This was a worry as I hated it last time. I know each time it will be different but so far the second has been pretty okay. I feel more tired, but my mouth has recovered so I can enjoy food whilst not feeling sick. I know the side effects can return, in the meantime I am really appreciating the simple things in life at the moment and am finding this all a very humbling experience.

All I need now is to start wearing my wig out in public... another hurdle I will overcome.

If not, I do have a great collection of hats.

n Send your messages of support to Fiona care of Hollie-Rae Merrick, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or send an e-mail to hollie-rae.merrick@archant.co.uk

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