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ADVANCE Perspective: Nurses

Prayers of Comfort for Locks of Love

Published October 3, 2012 1:19 PM by Guest Blogger
 Rosemary Earl, RN, is a maternity nurse at White Memorial Medical Center, Los Angeles.

I was so glad that our cancer center did the Locks of Love event. I had just cut my hair a few weeks earlier at a salon and did not know who or how I was going to get it to the right people. When I heard this event would be taking place I was so excited because it came at the right time. I am so proud I could do this in honor of my friends and also to give back to someone who can use my hair.

When I donated my hair, I wrote a note and attached it to the bag of hair to let the receiver know I did this out of love, in honor of my friends and co-workers from White Memorial. A personal note made me feel better because it meant a lot to me, and now my treasure is passed on, and I will pray for that person in my evening prayers of comfort. I will also send a copy to the families soon to share this information with them.  

The included with her gift of hair for Locks of Love:

Where do I begin? She was a friend. No, a good friend, a co-worker, a schoolmate, a professional nurse, and a mother is what she was. We met the year we became staff nurses at the current job we have held for over 30 years [at] White Memorial. Insoon and I met on a medical floor. We worked closely for the first three years, and then I went to work in another unit.  We always greeted each other nicely at lunch breaks, when we would see each other in the hallways, or leaving the hospital. Over the years, that's how we kept in touch.

In 1999, I decided to go back to college to finish up my baccalaureate degree in nursing. To my surprise, Insoon was sitting in the back of the classroom. She saw me, and was so excited to have an angel come to her aide, because she told me she prayed asking God for help. I chuckled on that, as I told her there are more to come, both Supreeda and Pat. So God had sent her three friends. The four of us bonded. Going back to college as an adult had challenges. During this time, school hours took us away from home and added long studying hours. On graduation, it was our fulfillment of completion.

In 2007, one of our angels, Pat, was diagnosed with stomach cancer. It was a short event that took her life, and she went back to her homeland of Thailand to be buried. In March 2011, a call came to me from the hospital bed of Insoon. She shared with me that she was sick, as they found a tumor in her brain. I felt helpless and heartbroken. What do you say? How do you comfort a friend when cancer is the reason for her surgery? As nurses, we have compassion, caring and love to be in the field we are in. These ladies are gone, and I wanted to honor them in a way that I could.  Being of middle age, I had heard the words "Locks of Love" a lot of times by my nieces who have given their hair for this program. The very day we lost Insoon, I set out to NOT cut my hair.  It took me one year and four months to get enough inches to donate. This hair is in dedication to Insoon and Pat, that they live on through my hair strands. To the person who gets this hair, "God bless you." Know that I will pray for you in my "pillow prayers" at night.

Love always,

Rosemary Earl, RN



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