Him: So this is the good part, where we remove the torture device.
Me: Yeah. It wasn’t so bad, just awkward. And the glue made my head really itchy.
Him: Yes, that’s very, very common. OK, Tanya, I’m going to need you to close your eyes and keep this towel against them. The product I am using is acetone and dangerous to get in your eyes.
Me: Acetone? Like nail polish remover?!
Me: Is my hair going to change colour?
Him: Not supposed to.
Me (eyebrows raised): Oh. OK.
Then he began the ungluing process and I was pretty close to passing out from the fumes. I could taste the acetone in my mouth. After all that heavy scrubbing on my head, he sprayed some oily thing and started combing through my hair.
Him: Keep your eyes closed, Tanya, until I tell you to open them.
Me: Don’t be alarmed by my hair falling out. It seems to be falling in bunches these days.
Him: Ahhh, you’re thinking too much.
Me: I always think too much. Lost a lot of weight too.
Him: You know what I think, Tanya? There are some things that we can change, and some things we cannot. The only thing we can control is our attitude. Correct?
Me: Yep. I’m trying.
Him: We are lucky to live here in Canada. And to have our medical system. There are people dying with famines in Africa or from radiation complications in Japan. We are lucky. We need to remember we are lucky.
Him (still combing through my hair): I want to tell you a short story.
Me (smiling): Sure.
Him: There was a man in the world who was very down and depressed. He was upset because he had no shoes. And all day long he would be embarrassed, sad and worried about it. Until he met a man with no legs. (He tapped my shoulders gently and then gave them a little squeeze). OK, Tanya, we are done. You can open your eyes now.
And I did.