Week in Review: Week 126

It was…a pretty good week. A work event was behind us, and it always feels good to move beyond the mad rush leading up to an event. I got some good photos for the blog I do at work, and that felt good. I had a good mix of social evenings and “at home alone” evenings. My only real complaint (well, besides a friend who is ignoring my emails, grr) would be the weather. It is just SO so hot, I don’t even want to go sit at the beach in the evening and watch the sunset. I just want to go home to the aircon (ps, I’m watching too many UK youtubers and watching too much British tv, I’m starting to pick up and use some of their slang without even realizing. and even when I do realize, I like it, and keep doing it).

Sad flowers.

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Fashion Schlub was included in Gwynnie Bee’s Best Member Moments of July post. I’ve shared this tidbit umpteen times. Whee, I’m a narcissist!

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While I’m still on the subject of ME (!!!), I’ll also mention that FS was also included in Independent Fashion Bloggers Links à la Mode Summer Round Up Party: A listing of fashion bloggers (below) you might want to check out. I love looking at accounts I’ve never seen before and finding new favorites (I’m definitely going to take a look at that second one!).

My friend Linda and I went to a cool open studio gallery thing in Brooklyn – it was a huge space with art exhibits and installations, appies and wine and interactive workshops/sessions.

I got a kick out of this artist (I picked up her card and now I can’t find it!). She combined crochet (aka yarn bomb torture activity) with lighting and 3D images.

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It doesn’t come across in the photo but the leopard in the center of the piece is actually 3D. How do people come up with this stuff? I’m so ashamed of my mind when I see things like this, like why can’t you ever come up with anything original?? 

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Vintage tin ceiling tiles and moss.

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Scraggly yarn (?) curtain in front of film of hand.

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This put me in mind of Noah’s Ark.

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we become everything we love

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We did marbling. Mine’s on the left, Linda’s on the right. It was so cool. I wanted to do more.

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I’m a sweaty Bettye poodlehead

We did the most amazing meditation. In the past when I’ve gone to meditation classes they were Buddhism-based, and I liked them very much. And a couple times a week I use a guided meditation app on my phone and just do a 5-10 minute breath-based meditation, and that’s fine. But this was like…SOUL meditation. Heart meditation. The woman who led it had us think on different things and there were different movements we did…it was just very different and it really moved me. Tears were streaming down my face halfway through. I wish I could go to her for more but she’s all the way in Brooklyn and that just doesn’t fit for me right now. But…wow. It was memorable.

This was the note on the chair I chose…that’s a pretty good message. For all of us.

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Then there was a photographer taking portraits of people in a dark room with crazy lighting…

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Everything about the evening was…I would say “perfect,” which is a term I rarely use…but for the HEAT. And humidity. The venue was air conditioned but it wasn’t even touching me, I was drenched the entire time. But other than that, it was really really really good.

Oh, this was one of my favorite things. Super tacky (intentionally?), but I love the beaded saying:

I play the game where I imagine my friends as old and silver. I like this game the most. Because in it we survive the hateful, warful years, all of the terrible things that will inevitably happen.

She is at @emilyoliveirastudio on Instagram if you want to see more.

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It was one year ago this week that I had my head shaved 2 weeks into chemo. THAT was a day, oofah. A year later I’m still going to Morgan at POSH to have her try and shape my crazy curly regrowth. This is what it looks like when I get up in the morning (!).

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The sides and bangs are pretty cooperative. It’s that poodle top bit that’s so crazy. It’s long enough to curl up and frizz in the humidity but not long enough to get my curling iron around to smooth. So at best, it’s smooshed down waves. Not cute like a “best short haircut” post on Pinterest.

Okay, here’s a thing I’m doing (ohhh I’m not happy about this but)…for the month of August – NO MCDONALDS SWEET TEA. I forgot I’d planned to make this resolution til Friday so I missed the first couple days…and Normal Me would say OH WELL, TRY AGAIN IN SEPTEMBER…but Trying to Be Better Than Normal Me is going to try and stick with it for the rest of the month. I was going to do “no sweet tea OR chips” in August but. I’m having a hard enough time getting my head around the tea part. Let’s just see how this goes. Chips can be the next step. BABY STEPS.

I have A Big Project on the agenda for this (Sunday) afternoon. If I complete it I’ll post a little before&after video. If I don’t, I’ll delete this paragraph and through the magic of television you’ll be none the wiser.

Before

After

This is the kitchen table I wanted, but…not happening.

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Okay, that’s it for this week! I’m going to to watch the last episode of Last Tango in Halifax (I didn’t realize when I started watching that it was only on for 3 seasons!) and then bed.

Wishing everyone a cool, dry, peaceful week!

 

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My Body vs. The Retailers

There are many posts out on the interwebz about body positivity and feeling comfortable in your own skin, etc. This applies to all body types, shapes and sizes. This is not purely the domain of the plus size person.

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Mostly, I do feel comfortable in my body. Emotionally comfortable. I don’t feel that I need to be thinner or different to be “better.” I’m neither less nor more than anyone else based on the shape or size of my body. And I’m proud of myself for feeling that way. I know many people struggle with their size, be it bigger or smaller than “the norm.”

7.24.18 –> This seems the perfect spot to interrupt and update this blog post and link to a quote of mine that was featured on SimplyBe, a UK-based plus-size retailer. I’m in the company of some real plus size powerhouses and I was honored to be asked to share a quote about body positivity. I hope you’ll go take a look and comment and wave…

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That said, I don’t always feel physically comfortable. I’m a lot of weight for my body (and joints and feet and knees and hips and heart) to support and carry around. It can be hard to get up, hard to move around, forget about steps or inclines, lordy! And especially after last year, a year of not feeling well and being very sedentary…and then this year when my feet got so painful…I have barely moved, and I am really out of shape.

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I don’t think you need to be “thin” to be “fit.” I know there are plenty of people who disagree with that, but I have seen overweight people run marathons (with no resulting health crises), I have seen fat people doing yoga, weight training, swimming, cycling, and more.

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To the title of this post, I see many debates about the clothing industry and how they’re not meeting the needs of every body out there. Do I think they can do more? Sure. Do I think every clothing line is ever going to accommodate every size and shape out there? Probably not. I’m normally a size 24. I see other women who are size 24 who are shorter or taller than me, have flatter stomachs or wider hips than me, who carry their weight all on the top or all on the bottom…there is no way One Size Will Ever Fit All! There is no way multiple sizes will ever fit all!!!

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And there are factors besides size when it comes to selecting clothing. I know several retailers who carry my size and even higher, and the clothes fit, but I don’t care for the fabrics, colors, or prints they use. Another couple of retailers carry my size and above and I really admire the styles, but the items are priced much higher than my budget allows.

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Can you see where I’m going with this? For any number of reasons, retailers may always fall short of my needs – size, style and budget-wise. And I can’t control that. What I can control is ME. While others may say “it’s not your fault” that clothes don’t fit, and that may be true, the fact of the matter is that if I want more than three tops in my closet <- gross exaggeration for purposes of making a point, *I* can be proactive and not wait around for retailers to cater to me. I know this may be an unpopular opinion in the plus size community, but I can do something about this. If designers can’t make a top to fit my stomach…I can make my stomach smaller to fit their tops. Is this right or fair? Perhaps not. But I would like more clothing selection than is available that fits me. So I can meet them part-way.

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This is my very roundabout way of saying I AM GOING TO LOSE SOME WEIGHT. Ha, how odd is it that in the current environment I feel I need to defend that statement. The world is crazy, yo! But yeah, I have no intention of going nuts with this, but I want to get to a place where clothes shopping is not so frustrating and difficult…and where just getting from Point A to Point B is not so challenging and exhausting. It will not be the focus of this blog, but I’ll let you know from time to time how I’m doing.

PHEW.

Onto the clothes! As serious as my thoughts were this week, my outfit was anything but! I got this fun, bright, easy-breezy Johnny Was top from Gwynnie Bee and I love it! Johnny Was makes beautiful boho-inspired items – tunics and kimonos and dresses, in plus and straight sizes. You’ve seen me in other Johnny Was looks here and here and here. They always make me feel happy, but quite honestly, I could never in a million years afford them! So Gwynnie Bee allows me to rent them to wear and enjoy…and then send back, without the high price tag! If you’re interested in learning more about clothing rental service Gwynnie Bee and getting one month free (!!!), follow this link.

Beyond the beachy tunic, my new Target sunglassesYAY FOR NO MORE SQUINTING (!!!), my long-time fave skinny jeans from Charlotte Russe and Sam Edelman chestnut brown sandals (sold out, similar here) round out the look.

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My sister sent me this cool book called “Brooklyn: A Personal Memoir: With the lost photographs of David Attie” by Truman Capote. I love the black and white photographs of old Brooklyn. It’s sad to see the landscape so modernizing these days. Interesting side note re Truman Capote, my cousin was in the 1967 movie “In Cold Blood” as “young hitchhiker.” He must have been 12 or 13. I’ve actually never seen the movie. Someday.

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What do you think about mainstream sizing and retailers’ responsibilities to their potential customers? I’d love to hear in the comments. 

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This post contains affiliate links, which means that I may receive a small commission if you click on them and/or buy something as a result of clicking that link.

Rebirth

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Spring at last! The time has come for light layers and bright springy colors! And on a more philosophical level, a sort of rebirth for me from all the nonsense of last year, illness and treatments and worry…then ridiculous foot pain all winter into the spring…so many things keeping me indoors and inactive and feeling down. There are also some other personal things that are finally reaching resolution this year, so I’m seeing some light at the end of a long dark tunnel. Sorry to be so oh woe is me but it is what it is. But there’s an end in sight – to sprinter (spring + winter) and to me feeling so MEH. 

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And this outfit is anything but meh. I’ve shared this “bright but dark” top before here and here. You can see how versatile it is in that I’ve worn it with black jeans, medium wash denim, and now white denim. I think the top would also look nice over a white peasant/boho style skirt like this, amiright? How nice would that be for summer evenings on the beach? Oohhhh…summer evenings on the beeeaaacchhhhhh. I can’t wait!!!

It’s still a little chilly early and late in the day and a light jacket is called for, Just in Case. I’m the queen of Just in Case.

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This army green jacket is a couple years old from Target’s Ava & Viv plus-size brand. It’s very lightweight Tencel, a sustainable fabric regenerated from wood cellulose. It’s similar in feel to rayon or bamboo, in that it has that same drapey characteristic.

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I was never really a white jeans gal but now I feel like they go with just about everything! How do you feel about white jeans?

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I’m trying to get away from wearing my plain silver disc earrings Every Single Day, so these little dangly silver and turquoise ones are on frequent rotation. Can’t you just see my hair being a teal blue?? I’m thissssss close.

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Thanks to my pal Linda for taking these pictures. We had a nice dinner after. I took a picture of my food and thought of Nancy of Nancy’s Style, who commented recently that it’s not a great idea to read my blog when you’re hungry (mostly my Week in Review posts) cuz I’m always posting pictures of the places we go to eat and the yummy things we have! So I will refrain. This time. Just so she can get ahold of herself 🙂 (GET AHOLD OF YOURSELF, NANCY!!!) 

What I’m Wearing:

  • American Rag floral border printed tunic, via Gwynnie Bee, 3x. Sold out, comparable here and here in plus sizes and in straight sizes here and here.
  • White Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda tapered jeans, size 22short. From Amazon
  • Pink velcro Vans Ward V sneaker, from DSW
  • Dangly turquoise earrings from Forever 21, no longer available. Comparable here and here and if you prefer gold to silver, here
  • Army green Ava & Viv/Target Tencel jacket, size 24. Old, comparable plus sizes here and here and straight sizes here and here

I’m linking up today with:

If you want to find some new bloggers to check out and maybe follow, visiting the link-ups is a great way to see a lot of different bloggers in one space.

This post contains affiliate links, which means that I may receive a small commission if you click on them and/or buy something as a result of clicking that link.

Loving the Skin You’re In

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So, if you know me or have been following my blog for awhile, then you know that last year I had cancer (I hate to keep saying that over and over but though there is currently no evidence of cancer, it and the treatment effects are still impacting my life. The gift that keeps on giving, ha ha, ugh). When my hair started coming out two weeks into chemo (i repeat, UGH) I decided to just get my head shaved cuz the clumping and constant hair loss was really a pain in the butt. So I went to a lovely salon called Posh in the town where I was about to move and had what remained of a lifetime of long hair buzzed off (read about that here). A group of girlfriends joined me for moral support, pictures and ice cream afterward.

ANYWHO, I was oblivious to what else was going on that day in the salon, and unbeknownst to me, there was an esthetician there that day who noticed the group of ladies at my side and the laughter and support they offered me.

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Skip ahead to just a couple months ago, I got a private message on Facebook from a woman named Afrodite (what a great name!) explaining who she was and what she’d seen that day, and offering me a complimentary facial because she was interested in oncology skincare therapy (read: specializing in skin care for cancer patients). Ooh! How lovely! I’d never had a facial so this certainly seemed intriguing, and several weeks later I found myself in her new soothing studio.

I asked Afrodite about oncology skin care (something I’d never even realized existed!) and she explained that the emphasis is on DETOX. Between surgery, medications and treatments, the last thing a cancer patient needs is more chemicals. She looks for holistic ways of treating skin issues that arise from cancer treatments. Those issues vary based on the specific chemo/radiation treatments used but it is usually extreme dryness and dehydration of the skin, acne and sometimes burns from radiation. I personally struggled with facial acne during the second half of my chemo, until only just recently. At a time when you’ve already lost your hair, eyebrows and eyelashes, to add a faceful of acne just added insult to injury!

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Afrodite became interested in this specialty while attending beauty school and accompanying a friend during chemotherapy treatments. The friend talked about the changes she was going through physically, and while losing her hair and experiencing skin changes were small sacrifices when fighting for her life, she felt like she really needed to feel and look good to feel “normal” at a time when so much of her life was not normal. She started getting facials monthly as a way of relaxing, which she felt was important in her recovery. After this experience, Afrodite found an online school in Atlanta, Georgia (The Skincare Therapy Institute, Corp) and earned a certificate in Oncology Skincare Therapy.

Afrodite plans to build her practice in this specialty of esthetics. She also does eyelash extensions for clients that lost theirs during treatment. She researched skin care lines made specifically for these special care clients and found a company called Hale & Hush, whose products she loves using.

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Fast forward to me lying under a sheet on a warming bed in her darkened studio, gentle yoga-ish music playing, soft scents filling the air…and rich lotions and potions being applied to my face with a feather touch. Products were brushed on, rubbed in and gently wiped off. Puffs of steam kept the air and my face hydrated. It all felt sort of mysterious as I mostly kept my eyes closed and never *really* knew what was going on, but it was extremely relaxing.

Afterwards, she sent me home with some Hale & Hush face wash to use on my newly hydrated skin. I’m not much of a “product” person, mostly I just wash my face in the shower with the same bar soap I use on my body, scrubbing hard with a Buf Puf to exfoliate, followed by Trader Joe’s antioxidant facial moisturizer. But I *am* using the face wash she gave me and it does feel nice.

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Afrodite said, “If I can make one woman feel better during this challenging time of her life than it was all worth it.” Well, she certainly made *me* feel better. I’ve had no acne breakouts since that day in her studio and the whole experience prompted me to make “pamper myself” my main resolution for 2018.

If you’re local and interested in a facial or eyelash extensions, or want to treat a loved one going through cancer treatments to a really special experience, reach out to Afrodite Boukas at (631) 645-0115 or by visiting her Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/Lash-Goddess-by-Aphrodite-1872189119763998/

I’m so grateful to Afrodite for noticing me that day in Posh and for extending this generous invitation.

Thanks to my daughter for taking pictures that day.

Weeks in Review: Week 83-84

Hey, cats & kittens! Sup??

I’m sort of over my cranky hump of last week because I’ve been forcing myself to go out, for better or worse. When you don’t feel well for a long time you just sort of get used to staying home…but I had finally hit the wall. So, while my legs are not really any better at carrying me around, I’m making them do it anyway even though it’s a struggle. Eventually I get home and collapse on the bed – for hours. But til then…I’m gettin’ out, baby!

I read “The Girls’ Guide to Hunting & Fishing.” It’s not my usual MO, but I liked it. I liked the characters, it was an easy, fast read…and I’ve already bought something else by her which I will hopefully like as much. I give it a 3.5 out of 5. That’s pretty good for me. I think I’ve given like 3 books a 5 in my adult reading life: To Kill a Mockingbird, The Power of One and All the Light We Cannot See. If you think we have similar book taste you can follow me on Goodreads.

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I puppy-sat two weeks ago. It was a beautiful day but no one wanted to sit outside with me.

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I started taking advantage of the beautiful area I moved to recently.

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Caleb is such a peeker*

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Just another beautiful sunset.

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Finally made it to a beach. It was just in time for the sun to go down, but still…

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I love this picture. Now, this has NOTHING to do with having cancer. But do other people see pictures of themselves and think “I have to tell someone I want this picture in my “life collage” at my funeral?” Maybe that’s just a regional thing where family members put together big photo collages for display at the wake or funeral service. I actually have a folder on my computer where I’ve started putting pictures I want displayed. Hey, that’s the last time I lot of people are going to see me – I’m not leaving THAT up to someone else. I have a *lot* of plans (guidelines?) for my funeral – and this goes WAY back before the cancer.

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Oh, it’s just a dog driving a BMW.

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I can’t resist a good sky.

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See above*

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A good friend made this beautiful bench for me. He’s calling it a bench. I’m using it as a table. It’s so smooth. I keep petting it.

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This bunny comes to the front yard every day.

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My friend Johnna and I went to a “doggy brunch” this morning. Cute concept but it was a little rough on Caleb. I brought a little rug for him to lay on but it was so busy he couldn’t really settle in. Getting up and down is hard for him these days so it can take him awhile to decide to lay down. Johnna’s 5-month-old Italian Mastiff , Shine, was *such* a good boy! He’s all velvety and loose-skinned and sweet.

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And that’s that! I plan on continuing to get out as much as possible. I have to start getting a LITTLE fit again so everything is not SO hard for me.

Have a good week, yo!

 

I’m Cranky, but…

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I’ve been feeling very cranky this week. Everything is pissing me off: my keyboard, the mouse, the dog, the bug that keeps buzzing in my ear at night, the return of heat and humidity, this %&(&^!! acne. And more.

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In trying to figure out what the REAL issue is…I think it’s the waste of this entire year to stupid cancer and the accompanying surgery and treatments. I’ve felt crappy for too long, I’ve been stuck inside and sedentary for too long, I’ve missed out on doing fun things with friends and Caleb…and myself.

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So, treatments are over. I certainly don’t FEEL better yet…but I’m trying to force myself out a little more. A teeny tiny walk with the dog. Sitting in my chair at the beach at sunset. Having ice cream with a friend in town. Easy things but…IT’S GETTING ME OUT OF THE DAMN HOUSE!!!

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So, as the title said, I’m cranky, but…I’ve tried to keep things as easy for myself as possible this year (well, except for moving, ha ha – that was not ideal timing but it’s done). A dress like this helps. The Sharagano dress is a drapey chambray (I think it feels like a Tencel blend) and SO easy peasy to wear. It’s a loose swirly tent-fit and hardly wrinkles. I rented it through Gwynnie Bee and when the sale price went to SIXTEEN DOLLARS I snatched it right up. I love this spicey orangey rust color and it goes well with several of my duster length cardigans so I can wear it well into the autumn.

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And oh yeah, POCKETS.

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So, yes, I’m cranky, but…things are GOING to get better. Each week a little more of the chemo poison will leave my body and I’ll start feeling better and better. I’ll be able to start living MY life again…not CANCER’S life. Stupid cancer.

Soon I’ll be spending less time laying in bed and more time watching sunsets.

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Pictures taken by my friend Karen. Thanks!

Week in Review: Week 77

It was a decidedly NOT exciting week. I missed a couple days of work for not feeling well…there so many different side effects to chemo that every day can be something different. But…halfway through. I’m SO looking forward to just FEELING WELL again after all this nonsense.

The daily headwear is a fun distraction. I have quite a collection of scarves now, thanks to friends and coworkers, and things I’d saved of my mother’s…and a couple hats. I’m kind of a spazz about tying them so so far it’s a pretty basic – kerchief look or this sort of scrub cap look. This one’s a lot of fun, sort of boho hippie with elephants on it.

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This was the whole outfit. I’m trying to get back in the habit of posting “outfit of the day” on Instagram. I can’t wait to be in the new apartment and not surrounded by boxes!

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This is the cutest hat that my sister sent me from Headcovers Unlimited, I think it looks sort of 20’s flapperish. A co-worker said I was looking very Great Gatsby-ish. I’ll take that!

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I tried on some baseball caps at Charlotte Russe. I don’t like that they come up so high on the sides. I passed. I know I could wear it over a bandana kerchief but now that’s more effort and more HEAT. I love getting in my car at the end of the whatever and taking the head thing OFF and letting the ac blast on my bare scalp – woohoeee!

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Yeah. Making myself eat (and drink) enough is a challenge. HOW AM I NOT SKINNY?!? Anyway, I receive many lectures about this so when I saw this adulting sticker I knew I needed to have it 🙂

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A friend gave me this silk scarf. I love the roses and want lipstick to match.

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I did feel well enough one evening to have dinner with friends then go to the beach. They walked to the lighthouse to look for bucks…and I dragged my chair literally like 6′ onto the sand from the parking lost and just sat there and breathed the good air. Til I was freezing. Then I left.

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Had a very pink shopping trip.

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More lecturing pushed me to try Crystal Light in water in hopes I would drink more. Nope. I’ll keep trying. How can eating and drinking enough be the hardest part of cancer?

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And yesterday we had a new awesome work event at Great South Brewery – the two young women who put this event together did an AMAZING job. I was there photographing the fun but didn’t last that long. And after that I was DONE. Was in bed by 7:30, down for the count.

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Well, THAT was the most boring blog post ever! Ha, sorry, folks 🙂 This week coming up is PACKING, more trips to the new place to move stuff, and a kooky fun activity Wednesday that I’ll share next weekend.

Well, THIS happened…

So… I apologize for my diversion from fashion and plus-size life posts, but this is what’s in the forefront of my life, time, head and heart these days. Last week I posted about the anger and heartbreak of starting to lose my hair. This weekend it *really* started to come out fast. In the shower it would just all mat up into a solid bird’s nest around my head. Trying to untangle it just made giant clumps come out. THAT was an emotional day and many tears were shed over the sinkful of hair. So I went ahead and scheduled a head shaving at a salon in my new town.

What was left before I went. Not much in the front, some length still in the back. Sort of a Friar Tuck look. Not really good.

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And here we go. Morgan the stylist was so sweet and gentle and patient with my papparazzi 🙂 taking tons of pictures. She started with a #1 blade and finished up with a 0 (zero).

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It was WEIRD. It is still WEIRD. But this was the worst part…and it will just get better from here.

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Friends came with me for support (thanks, guys!) and brought me scarves and hats and Fireball 🙂

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Getting there. I had moments of trembling and sadness, but mostly I was okay. I knew this would be better than the blotchy hair loss of the past few days, with hair coming out in the shower every day and on my pillow every night. I’ve been wearing scarves on my head each day to cover up and I was so afraid of them slipping off and revealing my monstrous looking head.

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I *really* hope I don’t also lose my eyebrows. They’re naturally a little sparse but they’re generally not visible under my bangs, which I usually like hanging in my eyes a little bit. No hiding anything now!

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Almost done. Heads are weird.

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Afterwards, a rinse and scalp massage while sitting in a lovely massage chair!

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Bye-bye, hair. See you again soon. I hear such different accounts of how people’s hair grows back after chemo. Sometimes totally silvery grey, sometimes the color of their youth, sometimes curly, sometimes soft. I guess it will be a surprise.

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All done! In my mind I sort of thought I’d end up smooth-headed but it’s actually very stubbly. Apparently if I want a smooth dome I need to shave with a hand-held razor and shaving cream. Not sure I’m up to that…but the stubble is a little annoying as it catches on scarves and feels weird when I move my head on my pillow. But I’ll give it a few days to see if I adjust. I guess I could go to a barber and have them clean shave me…or the hair might continue falling out. I’ve got three more treatments.

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Part of the gang, minus my two photographers. POSH salon in Northport was lovely. They do free head shaving for cancer patients and Morgan was so nice and made it all as pleasant as it could be.

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And I decided to walk out into the world with my bare head. I felt like no one knows me there yet so seeing me sans hair would not be a shock, plus I don’t know them either, so who cares what they think.

We crossed the street for ice cream then went to look at the new house and apartment which is less than half a mile from this nice main street. I did try on my hat gift for ice cream.

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Thank you to my dear friends for coming with me and hugging me and taking pictures, thank you Morgan and Posh for making a not-so-pleasant event as painless and pleasant as possible, thank you Universe for keeping me around 🙂

Don’t worry, I have more fun content planned for the weeks ahead!

Thanks, followers & friends, for sticking with me through this,

Bettye xoxo

OH! I am trying to be part of a link-up from fakefabulous.com – I’m a spazz at this stuff so I may not be doing it right, but I’m giving it a go!

This is the description of the Fake It Until You Make It link-up:
This link up is for anyone (of any age) to share their fabulous blog posts.
The main aim of the game is to share those posts that will help us all to fake our own fabulousness.
Whether it’s outfit inspiration, and style tips.
Beauty secrets.
Homemaking hacks.
Cooking tit-bits.
Parenting know-how.
Or, general life-enhancing wisdom.

It’s Not All Good

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So. I have to talk about The Cancer today. Through most of this time I think I’ve been pretty good at keeping my Game Face on. I am not by nature a perky, positive person. I consider myself more of a realist and prefer to face *all* things, good and bad, and not pretend bad things don’t exist. But I *have* really tried to find the good in the situation…to find some beauty along the way…small joys, blah blah blah.

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But yesterday I hit a brick wall. With all the rashes and diarrhea and queasiness and infections and sores and exhaustion and other joys that I have mostly kept to myself…the thing that I’m having the hardest time with is…losing my hair. I knew it was going to happen. I knew the particular chemo drugs I’m getting have that as a side effect. But I still hoped I would somehow escape it.

Nope.

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You know how a little hair always comes out in the shower? That’s normal. But yesterday…it just wouldn’t stop coming out. Big clumps and handfuls. And tears. Then when I tried brushing it out…it wouldn’t stop coming out. My brush was full of hair, my hands were full of hair…if I touched hair, it was coming out. I finally just wrangled it all into a messy bun and called it a day.

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I don’t know if it’s really noticeable yet because pulling hair back into a bun is sort of like a glorified combover (ha ha) but I’m sure in bright light it’s visible. And is only going to get worse.

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I’m afraid to take a shower this morning because so much more is going to come out. I’ll just wash my bangs in the sink. And hope for the best.

So I’m seriously stressing out about what I’m going to put on my head. I KNOW there are 12,000,000 options…but I don’t really see anything that looks like ME to me. I don’t feel sick, I don’t want to LOOK sick. I don’t want to look like someone ELSE. I’m not a hat person EVER – not in the winter to keep warm and not in the summer to shade my face…so this concept of having to put something on my head in the morning and leave it on All Day Long – at work, shopping, etc, just feels so awkward and foreign to me and I DON’T LIKE IT. I DON’T WANNA. WHAAAA.

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There. This is my time I’m allowed to be mad and sad and bitchy and complainy. I’M ALLOWED. I don’t want anyone trying to cheer me up, cuz you CAN’T. No one’s words can change the way I’m feeling. I’m terrified and angry. And I’m just gonna roll around in that for awhile.

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So, now that I’ve alienated half of you (ha ha), I can proceed with my outfit. I LOVE this dress. It’s by Rachel Roy via Gwynnie Bee. It’s dark dark grey and feels like velvety slinky silk. And it has this cool drapey effect on the front that hides EVERYTHING. It’s light and flowy. It’s EASY. Which is exactly what I needed yesterday.

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And we found the perfect location to shoot – this abandoned movie theater. Crumbly and littered…and yet even it had a little spot of wild flowers still growing. Even when I only WANT to focus on the ugly, I find some beauty. Damn it! Ha.

Weeks in Review: 68-74

Week by week it doesn’t feel like I do much…in fact, I’m doing a whole lot of Not Much. But when I looked back at the past 6 weeks since I last posted a Week in Review…yeah, there’s some stuff. So I’ll share.

I finished radiation. 28 treatments. That really felt like an accomplishment. I hope to never be back for more.

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I got my appetite back.

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I was so sure this baseball tee dress was going to be a win. But it wasn’t. I thought it would be cottony but it was more polyestery. And too long.

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This floral silk Lucky Brand top from Gwynnie Bee was a win.

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Nope.

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Got my blood clot filter taken out.

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I left on a jet plane. I did come back again.

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Florida! I stayed overnight with my daughter in her cute Tampa apartment.

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Cool bathroom where we had brunch.

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Katie found Tommy.

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I found the ocean. I floated and bobbed for hours. A manatee swam right past us!

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There was a beautiful sunset every night.

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My fambly ❤

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My grand-niece Annabelle is the sweetest.

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My boy was happy I finally came home.

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I got a present!

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And started real chemo.

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Meet Bruce: IV site gone wrong. One of several unpleasant issues. 9 days out from Treatment #1 I’m back to feeling almost normal. Just tired.

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Caleb got some new meds and feels good.

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Janey had a bath.

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And today I will be…PACKING…because my exciting news is I’M MOVING!!! More details and pictures to come….