Tracie Cone has always been a trailblazer. This award-winning journalist is the former California Newspaper Executive of the Year. She shares a Pulitzer Prize with fellow staff members at the Miami Herald for coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew and has twice been nominated individually. She has focused her writing on helping the underdog and empowering those without a strong voice of their own. Now she takes us on the fight of her life.
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Chemo-patterned baldness

Today we shaved the falling fuzz, resting at the Bozo pattern

OK, so my hair really didn’t fall the way it looks in the picture. But today I started getting itchy, like you get after a haircut and little hairs fall down your back. I realized the fuzz left on my head after my buzz cut last week was starting to fall out. Fast.

So today Michelle shaved my head, dulling a couple of razors in the process. After one break in the action she told me I had the same hair pattern as Bozo the Clown, so we stopped to take this picture.

I am adjusting quickly to life without hair. In fact, after a couple of forays in public, I’ve ditched the scarf for the most part.

The scarf screams “chemo patient,” which evokes strong reactions in people – from pity to plain ol’ ignoring. Some people are sympathetic; others just can’t face reality or mortality. I sat at a small café-style table next to a woman this week who could not look to her right at me. All of her conversations were directed to the other two women at the table. I think the scarf scared her.

Without the scarf I’m just some crazy lady who shaved her hair off. An artist perhaps. Or a lunatic.

In any case, people smile and stare. I like that much better.

3 Responses to “Chemo-patterned baldness”

  • Kim Williams:

    Sounds like the reaction I got when I was a young punk -although they usually didn’t smile, just stared.

    you look better than i did with a shaved head. who knew you had such a nicely shaped noggin!

  • Michelle Johnson:

    For later blogs, you must tell us: Does it itch when it grows back in?

  • Aly:

    I’m glad you are finding the bright side in all of this. I’m am cheering for you. You are handling it beautifully. Be well. Aly

    ps: you look more radiant than ever!

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