From one week to two years after chemo

8 Apr

How do you go from here…


to here?


With a lot of patience and just as much humour!

ps. this post is 3 months overdue ๐Ÿ˜‰

41 Responses to “From one week to two years after chemo”

  1. sara April 8, 2012 at 9:36 pm #

    You look lovely! I’ve followed your blog quite closely as you’re a few weeks ahead of me treatment wise… unfortunately chemo appears to have triggered alopecia for me which is rubbish. More patience required here, but the humour is as thin as my hair at times!! Xx

    • rosaslump April 8, 2012 at 10:16 pm #

      Hi Sara! thanks for you lovely words. Very sorry to hear that chemo has triggered alopecia, which I knew it could happen at times. I can imagine that humour can be difficult to find in a situation like this. Have they told you if it is permanent? Lots of love xx

  2. Fi April 9, 2012 at 7:28 am #

    Great to see you looking so well Rosa! It’s been such a journey and it’s so nice to catch the latest installment. I’m in London more often these days so if you find yourself there give me a shout!

    • rosaslump June 8, 2012 at 9:45 am #

      Hi Fi!
      Thanks!! how is the phd going? ๐Ÿ˜‰ love all your sewing and photography projects!


  3. Jo April 10, 2012 at 6:53 pm #

    Yey! Great to see your hair back! Love from J+T+E

    • rosaslump June 8, 2012 at 9:37 am #

      Hi Jo!!!!!

      Thank you! Congratulations on Emil, he is a gorgeous little boy ( I see him on facebook!). Much love to the family!


  4. Jan Asher April 23, 2012 at 11:28 pm #

    Thank You !
    I finished chemo last August. My hair started growing back in November and is now about 2 inches long and really curly. I can’t do anything with it. I miss feeling pretty and feminine. I miss my old body too.
    I was diagnosed with breast cancer on April 22 2012. It has been exactly one year. With the one year anniversary came an unexpected sense of sadness and loss.
    Seeing the picture of you, two years after chemo, helps me believe that things will get better.
    Jan Asher

    • rosaslump June 8, 2012 at 9:34 am #

      Hi Jan,

      Of course things will get better, but it is (I think) normal to feel sad. Three years on and I really love my life, however, I still have those moments of sadness and loss that you are talking about. I guess we just need to learn to live with them and not dwell on it. Youยดll possibly find that as time goes on it is easier to snap out of them.

      Health and happiness to you,


    • Lisa April 10, 2013 at 12:25 am #

      thank you so much for your honesty, Jan.
      my one year (since diagnosis) is coming up quickly on May 2, 2013.
      since my treatment isn’t even close to finished…i’m not sure how to feel.
      BUT, this blog is fantastic encouragement.
      I have 2 inches of super ugly hair. ha! can’t wait to have more!

  5. Dr. West April 29, 2012 at 9:36 pm #

    You are beautiful! Glad to see you are doing so much better. ๐Ÿ˜€

    • rosaslump June 8, 2012 at 9:31 am #

      Thank! working hard on my phd…so I can be Dr. too!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Jorie May 10, 2012 at 10:33 pm #

    Hello from Chicago, USA.

    My last chemo treatment for breast cancer was 18 April. I just went to a proper barber and had a straight-edge full head shave, so it may grow back evenly.

    I found you online searching for similar stories to my own. To see your photos really helps. Thank you for sharing so courageously. Thank you for your posts! You look beautiful. In both photos!

    Health and happiness to you~


    • rosaslump June 8, 2012 at 9:31 am #

      Hi Jorie!

      Thanks for your comment. Hope the hair growth is going well, you are nearly two months in now!

    • Lisa April 10, 2013 at 12:28 am #

      I am wondering if I could read your blog, Jorie?
      stage IIIb IDC (that doesn’t define me tho ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Bridget July 30, 2012 at 5:57 am #

    Oh, I can’t wait for my hair to be as long as yours! I’m 7 months out and soooo impatient! You are SO cute, with and without hair!

    • rosaslump August 26, 2012 at 11:02 am #

      Oh Bridget! You know I know the feeling. Trust me, one day you will get up and be able to put your hair up in a pony tail, and then youยดll realise that it is back for real ๐Ÿ™‚ x

  8. Desire September 24, 2012 at 8:31 am #

    Im 18 years old, i have recently found a lump on my left breast. I am terrified to even think about cancer, i almost lost my mother to breast cancer and im not sure how to tell her. Just a few months ago I fell in love with someone, well not just someone my bestfriend. Now me and my boyfriend decided to move in together. He is the only person ive told so far about my lump and he is more scared than i am. At this point i have to break the news to my mother and have her take me to the doctors. Reading and hearing about cancer survivors always inspire me and show me how many strong women are out there and i just hope that i can either be free or join them in their victories.
    You have truely shown me that even in a horrible situation you can still power through it all and be beautiful. My prayers go out to all women and children and men suffering from cancer.

    • rosaslump October 6, 2012 at 5:31 pm #

      Hi Desire,

      All I can say is have it checked as soon as possible. I hope it all goes well. Love, Rosa

  9. Kathryn November 10, 2012 at 7:40 pm #

    Hi Rosa,
    I found your blog and just love it. It is a service to many of us out there. I love your blogs about meeting people here and there and how much they affect your life and outlook. Your past cancer sounds similar to mine – and the drugs. I take taxotere, carboplatin, and herceptin – will go in for radiation for 6 weeks. Thanks for sharing so much of yourself and I am happy to see you fulfilling your life well. Love, Kathryn

    • samantha February 28, 2013 at 4:33 pm #

      This article made my cry ! seeing such a fabulous, healthy hair. My friend has lost her confidence in these kinds of products but showing her these pictures has brighten her day.

    • rosaslump December 21, 2013 at 4:14 pm #

      Hello Kathryn! glad you enjoy the blog and all the little stories. Hope all is well with you xx

  10. rosita November 14, 2012 at 7:10 am #

    Hello dear Rosa,

    I finished my chemo a week ago .I was really concern about my hair , But after i saw your photos i feel better. You look very nice . Thanks for putting your picture on the page . I m happy that your life has return to normal . You are very strong woman . i wish i can be strong like you. I m sure that your page will help a lot of women with same problems , which i m one of those .
    with love and respect

    • rosaslump December 21, 2013 at 4:13 pm #

      hello Rosita! sure you are just as strong, but it’s easy to think that others are stronger than us. Plus we all deal with things differently, so don’t be too hard on yourself ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

  11. Robyn June 15, 2013 at 5:52 am #

    I Am 32 Yrs Old And Was Diagnosed With Breast Cancer On Dec 12,2012 AT 31 Yrs Old And Had A Double Mastectomy On Dec 18,2012 & Started Chemo On Jan 22,2013. I Finished Chemo Almost One Month Ago. Losing My Hair Was The Worst But Thankfully It’s Already Growing Back!! I Wanted To Say Thank You For Your Posts And Pictures!! It gives Me Hope And Motivation. You Are So Brave And Beautiful!! I’m Gonna Be Meeting A Platic Surgeon On July 1,2013 To Start Reconstruction. I Can’t Wait To Be My Old Self Again. Again I Just Want To Say Thank You For Sharing Your Story!!!!

    • rosaslump December 21, 2013 at 4:12 pm #

      Thank you for your lovely and encouragin comment ๐Ÿ™‚ hope all is well x x x

  12. Dee August 9, 2013 at 4:12 pm #

    Hi I just found your blog. I am 18 months post tx and the hair has been rough. I appreciate your blog. I don’t think others can understand the feeling of losing hair then regrowing. It is very hard on the psyche, at least mine is.
    I miss my old hair, my old body, my old self.
    I pray it will improve ๐Ÿ™‚
    My best to you

    • rosaslump December 21, 2013 at 4:10 pm #

      Tooootally agree, it may seem trivial but growing the hair back after chemo can be a big part of recovery post chemo and cancer! xx

  13. Camille October 21, 2013 at 3:01 am #

    Thank you so much for documenting your journey! I have been finished with chemo for about two months and it is great to read about other young women’s journeys. Your sense of humor and honesty are spectacular! Thanks for sharing something so personal and I hope that you are doing well!

    • rosaslump December 21, 2013 at 4:09 pm #

      Hi Camillie! thanks so much for your comment! my repy comes 2 months late, you must have a full head of hair by now ๐Ÿ™‚ x

  14. Yvonne Rochester December 21, 2013 at 3:27 pm #

    Hi Rosa,
    You’ve inspired me a great deal just learning from your experiences and knowing what to expect. I was diagnosed in Nov 2012 and did surgery (mastectomy) Dec 18, 2012; finished chemo about to start radiation.
    Wish you all the best and keep writing. Congrats on your PhD! Love, Yvonne

    • rosaslump December 21, 2013 at 4:08 pm #

      Thanks Yvonne! comments like yours inspire me to keep on writing. Have a great Christmas xx

    • rosaslump January 13, 2014 at 10:50 pm #

      Thanks Yvonne! all the best for 2014! lots of love and hugs.

  15. Emily Horch December 27, 2013 at 3:46 pm #

    Just found your blog and it’s so helpful to see your journey. I’m in the middle of my treatments and still have a straggly bit of my (formerly) waist-length hair left which I’ve stubbornly refused to shave. I alternate between being fascinated by the ”de-hairing” process (for example suddenly waking up without most of my eyebrows last week) and just wanting to sit down and cry. Seeing you look so confident through all your different stages, as well as seeing you look healthier and healthier regardless of hair length, is a real a boost for me. Many thanks and wishing you a very happy 2014!

    • rosaslump January 13, 2014 at 10:49 pm #

      Hi Emily!

      All the best for 2014! it is so so so hard doing chemo, be kind to yourself and cry as much as you want to! it is the time to do so, but also remember to smile a much as possible and to never forget that there is an end to it all. You will re-gain your health and your hair. lots of love and hugs to you. It will soon be over xxx

      • Emily January 15, 2014 at 8:39 am #

        Hi Rosa,
        Thanks so much for your kind reply! I had my next -to-last treatment Monday, so there’s definitely light at the end of the tunnel and something to smile about. Now starting to plan my ”post-chemo reward trip” to my favorite spot in Spain. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • rosaslump January 15, 2014 at 10:07 am #

        Oh!!! great, two more to go and it will be over. Yeay!!!! Where in Spain are you going? I’m in Barcelona (as you may know!) ๐Ÿ™‚ x

      • Emily January 17, 2014 at 8:52 am #

        Going to a house near Conil (Cรกdiz) where I spend a few months a year ( I work from ”home”, where ever that is). Looking forward to great food, long beach walks with my dog and lots of sunshine to get rid of my yellow chemo skin. Also looking forward to speaking Spanish again, which is much better than my German (I’m American but living in Germany for my treatments). Light at the end of the tunnel!

      • yrochester January 17, 2014 at 12:49 pm #

        Emily, that’s such an excellent idea. Im sure you’ll have lots of fun. You deserve it! I have seven radio therapy treatments remaining and I can’t wait for it to be over to get a proper bath! ๐Ÿ™‚

      • yrochester January 17, 2014 at 1:15 pm #

        Hi Rosa, my skin and scalp have become very dry and itchy due to the chemo & radiation treatments. Do you have any recommendations on what to use to combat this? My hair has grown to about a quarter of an inch and is very thick; what do you suggest I use to improve the growth and texture of my hair?

  16. Anonymous August 25, 2017 at 5:46 am #

    Thanks for sharing it in so much detail! It is really helpful to see the week by week progress so I know what to expect. And it shows that you need to be patient and not worry too much about the bold patches that seem to last forever in the early stages. You look amazing! A bit overwhelmed it is going to take such a long time to get it back to ‘normal’. But I guess that is part of the process to just accept it. x

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