Some of you who are new readers may not know I lost my mom to Ovarian Cancer 4 years ago. This weekend I was reading some fantastic blogs and some of them made me think of my mom. I know the best thing for me when I start to feel sad is to write about her. When I write about her it brings me closer to her and makes me miss her a little less. Today I want to tell you about a group that helped to change my mom’s outlook on things during her treatment.
If you have never heard of Look Good Feel Better I am happy to tell you about them. This is an amazing charitable organization that helps women. In their words ” We believe that an improved self-image can help lift women’s spirits and nurture hope, helping them face their illness with greater confidence. We like to call it a makeover for the spirit.”
When my mom was going through her treatments, which ravaged her body, her skin, her hair and the loss of it. It was so hard on her inside and out. It was hard on her morale. She had a thick head of Irish hair and was very proud of it. I would tell my mom all the time how beautiful she was to me. And she was beautiful. The spirit and strength in her would shine.
There were days however where she did not feel beautiful. Where she felt she was losing herself. She was losing Nancy. She felt people would look at her and see just Cancer. I think experiencing this with her it is true. People sometimes tend to focus on seeing the disease and forget that there is a person still here, a mother, a wife, a lover, a sister, a friend. There were some days that were so hard for my mom and she wanted everyone to know she was still her.
She attended a workshop with Look Good Feel Better with my aunt. My amazing aunt who was my mother’s rock. During that time she was shown simple techniques on applying her make-up. She was shown how to take care of her skin. She was shown different styles to cover her head, she loved how they taught her to wrap gorgeous scarves, which ones to buy as certain materials were a little hotter and did not breathe too well. Things that she never would have thought of.
One day I got a call from my mom and she was thrilled to tell me that Look Good Feel Better wanted to feature her in an article they were writing. She went with my aunt and they had a great day together. I had the magazine somewhere but couldn’t find it. Chantal Richard from LGFB found it for me and send it to me by email. I was having some trouble uploading the article to my blog so I used the pictures instead. This was the 2003 issue.
She came back from that workshop glowing. It made a difference and gave her a lot of confidence back that she seemed to have lost along the way. When she went shopping some of the scarves she bought to wrap her head were simply gorgeous. So much so that when I would bring my kids to visit her, they would play dress up in them. My oldest would wrap them around her and make dresses out of them which my mom got a real kick out of.
She went wig shopping and learned to choose colors that were closest to her natural color, as well as other colors that complemented her skin tone. My kids once again got a kick out of the wigs and we have lots of pictures of them wearing the different styles, laughing with my mom. Make up and doing her hair became something to look forward to instead of something to dread.
If you know someone who is going through cancer treatments and they may not have heard of this wonderful amazing organization please let them know about it. Teaching a woman to feel good about herself no matter what the circumstances is a phenomenal gift to their self esteem.
I always talk about how we are all beautiful on the inside as well as the outside. Sometimes we forget that and we need people to help us remind ourselves that true beauty never goes away. Look Good Feel Better does something so amazing and I wonder if they really know.
They helped my mom look better on the outside when the inside of her had a hard time reflecting any beauty. What happened was that her self esteem got a good kick in the butt and it helped her take control of a situation she had lost control of. She was able to flip how she was feeling. Taking back the reins left her feeling strong, nurtured her inside so that she was Feeling Better. The Feeling Better led her to see that she really was Looking Good. Inside and out.