Tuesday, June 5

not a good time

You know what's not a good time?

Having back surgery. 
Okay well I wouldn't call what I had a back surgery. 
I may be a tad dramatic :)

But in April I did have a mole scraped and sent to the pathology lab for them to determine whether or not it was of the scary kind. Pathology said it was halfway scary. On the scale of scary it goes "normal --> mild atypia --> moderate atypia --> severe atypia --> melanoma" --- and this mole was moderate atypia. 

Halfway to MELANOMA.

For years I have said that if I am going to have a cancer, it's probably going to be melanoma. I always said this with a laugh, because I know my love of being the color bronze is both stupid and dangerous. I am not a chronic tanning bed user (used it before prom, Mexico, and my wedding - I admit), and each winter is a serious struggle to not open up a tanning membership and get a little color on my pale skin. 

I've eased up on tanning outside, mostly because school is not conducive to spending a lot of time outside, but also because I know those UV rays are dangerous. It's like an addiction though. A stupid obsession that will not leave me. I suppose it's wrapped up in my self esteem --- "This color will look better on me when I'm tan."  "My legs look SO much better tan {truth}." 

I was kind of sick to my stomach when I heard I had moderate atypia goin on in my skin cells. And I was SUPER nervous last Thursday when I went in to my dermatologist's office to get my scary mole excised. Sounds like an EXORCISM. Yikes.

Other than getting my wisdom teeth out (for which I was totally out), this is my first surgical experience. I was literally shaking like a weak little fish on that exam table while she scalpaled me open. And it was REALLY odd to feel the skin lose tautness across my back, everything loosened up like it had been unzipped. Of course I just chatted the whole way through it, asking about the procedure and what tools she was using for the surgery. Thank God for Lidocaine, because it didn't hurt one bit --- except for the 12 pokes of Lidocaine it took to numb the area in the first place.

The aftermath hasn't been so pain-free though. She ended up having to do a 3-inch long incision and had to cut through multiple layers of my back to get the atypical cells out. I'm hoping she got out as much as she needed. This is what my Frankenstein back looks like:
Personally, I think it looks like someone sewed a worm into my back.

It's right next to my spine, which makes it incredibly awkward to do anything to...luckily I'm married to a doc-to-be who loves wounds and was thrilled when I told him I'd let him take my stitches out in 5 days. I swear he teared up a little at the news

I share this with you for two reasons:
1) I'm a whiner. You know this.
2) To spread the word about sunscreen.

Though this post is kinda sarcastic, I get sad when I think about the future of my skin. I wish I were always better hydrated, and I wish I wore more sunscreen over the last 26 years. I suppose it's never entirely too late to start, although a lot of damage has already been done. This back  exorcism excision has sucked and I don't want to have to go through more in my future. 

So that's all. 
Any neat ideas for the name of the worm that now lives on my back?

Cheers ;)

1 comment:

  1. Four days before the end of 7th grade I had two moles taken off my back, both with moderate atypia cells. I've seen my derm every 6 months since then, and though I haven't had any other problems, it's still scary! Andrew doesn't like it when I tell people this but he gets really teary every time I get a sunburn because he's worried I'm going to die of melanoma...


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