Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Dodging Storms and Cancer!

I'm feeling pretty thankful this past week, as I've just dodged a storm and cancer! We celebrated this past Friday evening with beer overlooking another nearby marina. 

When you hear that a Tropical Storm is headed your way, it can put you on edge. When you also hear the "C" word, it can be pretty scary! However, I have to admit that my type of cancer is pretty common and I wasn't freaked out. What did I have? Skin cancer! Basal cell carcinoma to be exact.

Luckily, I didn't waste any time making an appointment with my dermatologist when I had noticed a tiny little spot on the front of my shoulder that sometimes itched. I wish I would have taken a photo of the spot, because it was so tiny! This is a good reminder to ya'll to know your body and its changes. I've worn sunscreen on my face since my teenage years, and I try to keep covered if I'm going to be in the sun a long time. There are no guarantees, so gotta be aware!

Anyway, as I suspected my dermatologist agreed that the spot looked suspicious. Before I knew it, she was sticking me with a needle and cutting out a piece of skin! It was no big deal and healed pretty fast. But .. just about when the scab healed I received a call from the doctor's office. The biopsy confirmed that I had basal cell carcinoma and I needed to have a larger piece of skin removed. This past Friday, I was back at the office. Again, the procedure was no big deal. There was a small amount of burning as the meds entered my shoulder, but then I couldn't feel a thing. The doctor cut deeper this time, which resulted in two layers of stitches. The deepest layer of stitches will dissolve in 3-4 months, and the outer layer of stitches will need to be removed in 10 days. Guess I can't do my push-ups anytime too soon!

The doctor said that this is a very slow-growing type of cancer and hopefully this next biopsy will show that we've gotten it all. I'm expecting good news, but keep your fingers crossed for me. I had been to my dermatologist two years ago for a skin cancer screening, and had missed seeing her last year. This is another reminder to visit a dermatologist every year for a check-up!

Last week another bullet was dodged .. Tropical Storm Gordon. It was predicted to head straight towards Louisiana, so we secured everything on the boat. Luckily, our aluminum bimini frame is at a shop to be duplicated in stainless steel. so we didn't have to worry about that. Our sails have yet to be back on Nirvana, so we didn't have to deal with that either. We really didn't have to do much, and we weren't at all concerned about Nirvana. We were concerned about one of our rentals that floods every year .. including this past April! When Gordon decided to head further East of us, we were so relieved. We really didn't wanna have to deal with restoring our rental again! Not only did we dodge the storm, but the weather was beautiful. We woke up to this the morning we were supposed to be in bad weather ...

Since I have stitches on my shoulder, I took it easy over the weekend. I wrote several blog posts about our recent projects, as well as a post about what we've been up to when not focused on the boat. I'll be posting these the next few weeks, and hopefully I can start finding the time to write at least once a week again .. without having to have stitches to keep me down!

This past Sunday we chilled in the boat and watched football. The best part was having our grandson chill with us! This was the first time that we had babysat him on our boat, and we really enjoyed his company. He's 7 months old already .. time is flying!

He is the "Best First Mate"!

It was nice to be able to lower our salon table and have plenty of room for crawling around!

I've been feeling really thankful lately .. life is good!

*As I post this today, I wanted to mention that our thoughts are with those on the East Coast that are in the path of Hurricane Florence. It's due to hit this Thursday, and so many people will be affected by this storm. We've been through many hurricanes, including Katrina. We know the anxiety these folks will experience, as well as the loss. Our hearts goes out to them! Today is also 9/11 .. we will never forget that day and our thoughts are also with the victims and heroes of that terrible day. Life can be so unfair sometimes, so embrace the good days!

Hasta luego .. until then. Mid-Life Cruising!

1 comment:

Drew Frye said...

Oh dear, the curse of fair skin and freckles. Kinna hard to recognize a "spot." What I can say is that there have been multiple spots in my family and all were resolved very simply. As you pointed out, frequent screening is key.

Big hats, shirts with sleeves (at least short sleeves) and sun glasses.

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