Real Story Maya Shastry

Getting Diagnosed with Breast Cancer

A mother of two teenaged sons, Mrs. Maya Shastry was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015. She had visited the doctor to verify some discomfort and was suggested a mammogram. The results of the mammogram led to further investigation. A PET scan confirmed the findings. Within a couple of days, she had undergone surgery and was to go through chemotherapy. The speed of events was a blessing in disguise as there was no time for thinking or worrying. She believes its very important to maintain a positive mindset and just manage things as they come. It also helps when everyone around maintains the confidence in the treatment and recovery. Any kind of sympathy, even self-sympathy is detrimental to the process as it only brings down the confidence and sense of normalcy.

Dealing With Chemotherapy Side Effects

Mrs. Shastry went in for her chemotherapy with whatever knowledge she could gain from reading about it. The doctors informed her that due to chemotherapy side effects,  after 14 days she would start losing hair. Once chemotherapy was stopped there would be a gap of a few months before the hair started to grow back.

Mrs. Shastry understood that society finds it difficult to accept women with a shaved head but had not really given it much importance. She personally realised the impact while undergoing her second round of chemo when she had already lost 80% of her hair. She had taken to wearing a scarf by then. One day when her younger son returned home from school, he looked at her and was shocked. He found her image so distressing that he choked with sorrow and could not talk till he had calmed down. She then saw the effect her hair-loss was having on the children and their lives. At the time, her son was in his tenth standard, a crucial year, and was due to write his exams. She had also noticed that the children had stopped getting their friends home as they did not want to answer any questions regarding her situation.

Papillon Wigs - A Step Towards Normalcy

This was a turning point. Mrs. Shastry decided that she had to make changes to make things seem more normal for everybody. Even for her, having fewer questions asked, meant having a better chance at feeling normal and positive. She found support in her friends who helped her approach Papillon Wigs. Having the wig made and fitted, made a huge difference to her confidence. The wig was so natural looking that no one ever noticed it. She was able to visit the children’s school and talk to the teachers without worrying about being questioned about her appearance. Even simple things like stepping out to go for a movie with the family, which would have made her think, now became easier. The crucial thing for her was that the wig brought back normalcy in the family and allowed the children to live without worrying.

Mrs. Shastry believes that it’s important to stop worrying about what others think and live with confidence. “Be happy” she says, “Keep a smile on your face and spread positivity. Things will surely work out smoothly.” Watch her talk about her experience here.