the moment I knew that I was going to lose my hair, I
wanted a tattoo!
also knew that I did NOT want it to be permanent and I did NOT want
it to hurt!
close friend Jen, Artsy Chick, is a career artist and
painter and has had a successful career as a union scenic artist/painter for film and television. My husband
Tobin and I lived in close
proximity with Jen and her husband David as neighbors in NYC. Now,
having the move to LA in common, all four of us have become very
was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer just as Jen and David were
literarily on the road form NY to LA. I have many great friends here
in LA already but I was very glad that they were moving here, too.
Since the moment they got situated they have been loving and
supportive to both Tobin and me.
a visit, shortly after I started chemo, Jen and I were talking about
the ramifications of my baldness. We both agreed that my naked head
was a blank canvas crying out to be adorned. I was already SICK of
NEEDLES and knew a real tattoo would be dangerous because of the
possibilities of infection. We agreed that a Henna Tattoo would be
perfect. I was still sick enough that sitting up was hard to do,
never mind researching the Henna idea. Jen, however, was immediately
on the case. She researched Henna, patterns, recipes, sources and
mysticism until she was sure she had an approach that would work.
The art of
Henna has been used as a natural way to decorate the body for at
least five thousand years throughout Africa, India, and the Middle
East. There was a
confusing amount of raw information to weed through. We both became fairly obsessed until Jen found a recipe that
made sense. All the ingredients were 100% natural and that sounded
perfect to us.
Henna paste that we used was made out of the crushed powder of the
Henna plant, mixed with essential oils and lemon juice. It had to be
made 12 or more hours ahead of time and different parts were added
at timed intervals. It took some considerable organized planning but
we were determined to give try it. (We certainly wish we had found
the Earth Henna Body Painting™
most creative and enjoyable part of the adventure was designing the
pattern and then figuring out how to transfer it to my head. We did
some research into primitive body painting designs from African,
Turkish, Indian and Arabic sources. The first one we designed was
based on a Moroccan image that we elaborated on to make it larger, a
little more modern and whimsical. It was so interesting to read
about the meanings behind each of the old traditional designs. They
were infused with poignant messages of good; healing, happiness,
fertility, abundance and more...
first design we created for my head was so close to what I had
imagined I wanted that I kept it on through most of my first set of
bald days. Once I realized how much I loved having it on my head and
enjoying the reactions from loved ones and strangers alike - I was
hooked. The positive Karma inherent in the tradition of the Henna
was clearly affecting me.
process brought Jen and I closer as we went through it every other
week. Eventually I realized that if I could re-trace the design
before it disappears, almost anyone could do it for me. Even a guy's
guy like my friend Kramer. I have lots of fun
memories of a variety of friends and family tracing my baldhead with
the Henna paste.
around me enjoyed it. It took people off guard and it made them
smile. When they smiled at me I couldn’t help but smile back.
Especially with children. In fact, one of my favorite moments was
when I had some dark Henna paste drying on my head and I was sitting
out back by our pool. I looked up and noticed two neighbor kids on
the top of the jungle gym in the next yard. They stared over the
fence at me. Brandon
hollered, “Hey, is that a tattoo?” I assured them that it was
but it was only temporary and they were in awe. I got closer so they
could see it better and realized as we laughed and talked about why
I had no hair. Rather than being freaked out or put off by my
strange new look they were drawn in and I was now way up on the
neighborhood COOL meter.
great thing is that I can run around without a hat or wig and with
the Henna on my head I don’t feel like I am naked, or sick, but
rather like a chick with a keen sense of style!
start a trend!
your own Chemo Chicks Head Art Transfer Stencil!