Monday, September 26, 2011

Look Good...Feel Better Class

Monday night, Adelia and I attended a class, "Look Good...Feel Better", sponsored by the American Cancer Society.  The program is open to all women who are undergoing chemotherapy, radiation, or other medical treatment, and focuses upon the appearance related side effects of chemotherapy and radiation on your body.  I would probably say that the class mirrored breast cancer statistics, as the cosmetologist teaching the class and I were the only individuals there (with the exception of Adelia), who were born in the past fifty years.  The best part of the evening was that we walked away with a free bag of cosmetics!

As I await my next oncologist appointment, and find out exactly what chemotherapy regime I will be prescribed, I've been researching. (Aren't you surprised to know that?  LOL)  There are approximately twenty different chemotherapy drugs on the list for breast cancer treatment.  The majority of the drugs are combined to form combinations for treatments.  All of the characteristics of your cancer, as well as your menopausal status determine which drug combination you are prescribed. 

Over the past few days, especially during the class, it has become very real the side effects that I most likely will experience on this journey.  Chemotherapy is a systemic treatment, which means it's not localized, but administered to the entire body through the bloodstream.  Chemo drugs are given to weaken and destroy cancer cells.  I'm praying that my chemo will "seek and destroy" any little cancer cells floating around and blow 'em up...just like on Griffen's video games!

The "Look Good...Feel Better" class emphasized what we already know.  If you look good, you'll feel good., or at least better!  Sure, there are days that we want to lounge in our comfy flamingo night shirt (thanks to my Mother, I'm now the owner of flamingo covered sleepwear, which Jeff has taken to calling it the "Florida Lottery Nightgown!), but we know that it would be better for our "spirit" if we get up, put your face on, fix your hair, and get dressed.  If you look your best, you'll at least feel better.

I learned many things during the course of the hour-long class.  (Don't you just love it when you learn something!)  We are all taught about cosmetic safety, and the lifespan of your cosmetic products, but let's face it...most of us never follow the suggested guidelines.  As a chemotherapy patient, it is imperative that I now begin thinking about keeping my cosmetics "clean", as to avoid risks from bacteria or other infections.  While on chemo, it is advised that you utilize disposable make-up applicators, like cotton balls, cotton swabs, disposable mascara wands, or even a sanitized hand.  It was also advised that you never, ever place your hand into a jar, container, etc..., but instead, use a cotton swab to dip out of the jar or container.  This is probably a tip we should all utilize!

Information was presented about skin and nail care, in addition to make-up tips and head coverings. Yours truly was the make-up model.  (Remember, I was the only one under 50!)   Don't moisturize your eyebrows, and they'll stay in longer.  When you don't have eyelashes, it is better to "dot" your eyeliner, rather than harsh lines.  You can visit the website for the make-up guide, as well as the information on scarves, turbans, and head wraps.  One of the neat things I learned was how to take an old t-shirt and turn it into a head scarf.  I think I'll be going through some of Jeff (and even Adelia's) t-shirts, to decide which colors I need for my wardrobe!

Do you think I'll "Look Good...Feel Better" with an old camo t-shirts as a head wrap?  Exactly what ensemble would one wear with that?



Anonymous said...

You should wear your huntin' clothes of course.....LOL
Love Ya Girl

Anonymous said...

You are a beautiful woman, so whatever color tshirt/head scarf you choose to wear will be just fine. You & your family are in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

The camo will be perfect for doing battle! You may want to add a pink bow to it! I am sure that you were a blessing to all those at the class who were more in my age range. We will be transitioning to Tennessee next week, but when we come down from the holler to town and check emails, I will look forward to hearing good things about you while you do battle! Love, bhk

tracy said...

t shirts into head wraps, the possibilities are mind boggling! Sounds like you got some useful information from that class. there were things u wrote about that i never even thought of. I am glad that Deedee got to go with you and it is a good thing you are doing to include the kids in this as much as you can. you are still in my thoughts and prayers.