Here We Go, Yet Again

Here We Go, Yet Again

You’d think it would get easier.

I had just walked in the door after work. I hadn’t slept well the night before, and it had already been a long week even though it was only Tuesday. I decided a quick nap would do me some good and give me the energy I needed to accomplish everything on my to-do list for the night. No sooner had I lain down and snuggled under a blanket on the couch, when my phone rang.

Unexpected biopsy results

It was my doctor. Cheerily, she asked how I was. (I don’t know, doc – you tell me, I wanted to say, but I didn’t.) Then she dropped it on me. The biopsy I had yesterday morning came back as squamous cell carcinoma, and I needed to come in for an excision. “But the last biopsy came back clear, and it looked just like this place,” I protested. Not that she was going to change her mind. Not that the biopsy results would magically change.

She told me we needed to get it taken care of soon and scheduled an appointment for in-office surgery on December 14. Ten days before Christmas Eve. What’s with my skin cancer and holidays lately?  I just had two biopsies right before the long July 4 holiday weekend, which resulted in one excision for basal cell carcinoma.

Another excision procedure

My doctor told me the procedure would be just like last time, which means I’ll be getting numbing shots (last time it was six shots), she’ll then cut out the area plus remove extra skin around it to make sure she gets all of the cancer, then I’ll get an internal layer of stitches and an external layer of stitches and a nice big bandage to top it off. And if it’s like last time, I’ll then have pain, once the numbing shots wear off. This time, though, I’m having the procedure first thing in the morning and will go into work after, instead of having it done at the end of the day and heading home. This will be loads of fun, I thought, as I put the date on my calendar.

Skin cancer recurrence never gets easier

I should be used to phone calls like these by now, but I’m not. It still rattles me each time I learn I have another cancerous area. Right now, I’m frustrated, I’m sad, I’m anxious about yet another procedure, and I’m angry at how stupid I was with my sun habits in my younger years. Twenty plus years of skin cancer, and this never gets any easier.

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Comments

View Comments (5)
  • BeePA
    10 months ago

    I feel your pain, have had 4 more this past month, making 14 on my face so far. I joke that I’m getting basal cell on top of scars.

  • Judy Cloud moderator author
    10 months ago

    @beepa, I’m sorry you’re having to deal with so much. Your positive attitude is a good thing, though. Thanks for your comment – we are all in this together!

  • Judy Cloud moderator author
    10 months ago

    I love your positive attitude! You are a true warrior, my friend. Thank you for sharing your story. You’re giving hope to others who have been diagnosed with skin cancer. Sending you healthy thoughts!
    Judy

  • l1curt
    10 months ago

    I had multiple melanomas removed when I was in my 20’s and early 30’s, ans several were diagnosed as stage 4. I was clear/cancer free for 25 years and when I was in my 50’s, my melanoma returned, only stage 1, thankfully.

    In August 2016, I was diagnosed with desmoplastic melanoma on my head, then a PET scan found lymphoma. Before my treatments were complete, a melanoma was found on my leg (surgery, skin graft). It was a long 11 months. I have come to expect my biopsies to be positive, and I’m rather surprised when they’re benign. I’m not a pessimistic person but this disease is tenacious and random……. thankfully it responds to the knife, radiation and a positive attitude.

    Maybe because I’ve been dealing with melanoma for 40 years that I’m rather numb and complacent about another cancer diagnosis. It’s just part of my life. Notice how I said, “LIFE?” Cancer is not necessarily a death sentence. I live like there will be another melanoma in my future but it’s a long way from my heart!!

  • BeePA
    10 months ago

    I admire you, you have such a wonderful positive outlook. I have two friends who have had sparred with melanomas as long as you and have your same wonderful attitude.

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