Monday, 8 September 2008

Some light relief

This cupboard in my bathroom is filled to overflowing with bubbles, oils and other exotic ungents


I thought I would share my comedy moment of the week; it will be these moments that stick in my memory in years to come when I discuss my personal journey with Breast Cancer; the things that made me laugh, when even laughing hurt.

There are so many little things we take for granted in everyday life, the ability to access hot water and clean ourselves when we feel the need. Little bathing rituals we acquire that help us set the world to rights, a bath, a hair wash, just feeling clean can be spiritually cleansing too. Imagine my dismay when I was told not to get the dressings wet! No showers, no baths, and washing my hair virtually impossible! I wanted a hair wash, it hadn't been washed in 3 days; I was beginning to feel like the great unwashed, it bothered me out of all proportion, despite my Husband's protestations that it looked fine, it smelt fine, and anyway who was going to see! Men don't get it.

I wash my hair every day usually, it's one of the few things I do that is any kind of concession to the usual female preening rituals, I don't wear make up, never have. I don't colour my hair, never have. I do like to feel clean, I like my hair to shine and smell fresh . I bathe every day, often having a shower in the morning and a bath in the evening. It is my way to cleanse away the ills of each day, a luxury; to feel renewed, rejuvenated; it is healing.

I had figured out that with some help from himself, I could clamber in the roll top bath, and submerge my nether regions in a couple of inches of water perfumed with my favourite bubbles and generally splash around cleaning me from the waist down. Introducing water above my belly button was problematic, it was apt to get uncomfortably close to the dressings on my breast.

A little Internet research is often my way to circumvent frustration when faced with a task that seems seemingly impossible; and my mission was to wash my hair. Despite having a bath of sorts, I still felt grimy, and unclean. Yes, I know I am totally irrational, but as I reminded my Darling husband, I am female and it is my prerogative to be totally irrational about such things, and if he valued peace, he would stop telling me I was being irrational and that my hair was fine and could wait a few more days.

They say 'Desperation is the Mother of Invention'; well I was desperate by now, and willing to consider any method to secure clean locks, regardless of how madcap it might at first appear. My Saviour appeared in the form of a roll of Clingfilm. Yes, that right, Clingfilm. I undressed, and bid my poor husband wrap me in it tightly, over the area that the dressings occupied, and above and below; this way if I got wet, it didn't matter! I have to tell you that it took us a while to accomplish this, and the subsequent mayhem that ensued as I was wrapped up like a Turkey had us both in uncontrolled fits of laughter.

It was some while before either of us calmed enough to allow him to wash my hair for me; I bent over the basin and he carefully and gently washed my hair, rinsing it as if I might break; me still trying to stifle giggles and the rid myself of the ludicrous image I made in the mirror. I shall never be able to look at Clingfilm on the shelf in Waitrose again without having to stifle a smile.

18 comments:

lampworkbeader said...

This cling film business could catch on...
Glad to hear you are up and around and managing a smile.
By the way I am a 20 year survivor, so keep with the positive thoughts.

Faith said...

Ah what visions that conjured up! Necessity is the mother of invention - well done you! Is that your bathroom? How pretty and elegant. We're just doing ours up and got wall panelling too, but in pink. Keep laughing Zoe xx

Fern said...

Hi Zoe,
I am pleased to hear you are recovering well from the op and glad your sense of humour is in tact! Very best of luck for tomorrow.

Frances said...

Zoe, I so love this post. Really, you and your husband make a very good team, full of imagination.

I totally agree with you how refreshing it is to have your hair newly shampooed. Well done!

xo

Mother Nature said...

Zoë,
I'm laughing inside just thinking about you and hubby and the shampoo.
Love you
Donna

Preseli Mags said...

I bet you felt good after that - clean hair and a good laugh. Good old clingfilm. Whoever thought it was just for sandwiches?!

Milla said...

Good for you, necessity being the mother of, etc. QUITE understand - not only the clean hair but the not being defeated. And you were lucky ... it's at times like this that the doorbell normally goes!

mountainear said...

Brilliant Zoë! You'll look back in years to come and think 'did we really do this?'

Your bathroom looks very covetable. We're all very minimal and restrained - my OH doesn't do anything approaching pretty. I do yearn for something like yours. Like hair washing, I think it must be a girl thing.

bradan said...

Novel use of cling film, Zoë! That's the spirit, never give up, esp when it comes to hair washing! xx

Grouse said...

So glad you found something to laugh at in all this.....

thinking of you.....

Cait O'Connor said...

I think you should spread this novel cling film idea :-)

Exmoorjane said...

Fabulous. Just wish you had a picture!!

Crystal Jigsaw said...

It's good to see you laugh. Take care.

CJ xx

Inthemud said...

Cling film! What an excellent idea! Wish I'd thought of that. I was like you desperate to get in the bath, but i didn't think of clingfilm, I just got in with a few inches of water and just washed very gingerly, trying not to wet the dressing.

So glad to read that you are able to have a laugh!
Lots of love XX

emmat said...

God, if only I could give you some of my tolerance for having dirty hair. Or possibly, if only I could get some of your high standards of cleanliness....

Withy Brook said...

Typical of you Zoë to make us all laugh so! Thank you. Waiting to read your next blog, when you are ready. Love and prayers etc, Withy

CAMILLA said...

So pleased to hear about the good news Zoe,wonderful.!

Think you deserve a great big bottle of champers Zoe.

Excellent news, take care, lots of hugs to you Zoe.

Camilla.xx

VP said...

I love the simple loving kindness your husband showed when washing your hair.

I had a similar dilemma re washing last year following an operation on my foot.

A plastic bag and a rubber band was my solution. And I giggled so much whilst under the shower, I nearly fell over!