It’s time to head out, literally, to the wig shop and do something about my hair. It’s getting pretty sparse. I refuse to shave it all off. The girl who worked on #1s teeth today at the orthodontist was talking straight to my brows or lack thereof. Or maybe it was my quickly receding hairline. I forgive her. She’s the same person I sideswiped in the parking lot in May. She didn’t recognize me. There’s a bonus!!
I hope I’m not jinxing myself, but I have felt great the last week or so. We will ride this wave as long as it lasts. The constant nausea is gone as well as the persistent nasty taste in my mouth. I brazenly canceled my labs and follow up oncologist appointment for today, if for no other reason than to try to prove to them I am NOT a hypochondriac.
Part of my mystical beauty routine thanks to Zel includes filing down painful, excess keratin that builds up on my feet everyday. Then I use a lotion that could double as a varnish stripper. I promise, this is my only stripper reference ever. Our 6 yr old, in addition to helping me keep count of my eyebrows, stumbled into this glamorous experience and asked what I was up to. “I am scraping my feet. Want to see?” So I open the little ped egg and show him the white powder inside. “What is that?” he wants to know. Powdered feet I tell him. He hastily exits stage left. “EWWWW!” This from a kid who loved petting the skunk and snakes at zoo camp. “If you have enough of it and add water, you can make a whole new foot. Should I save it up for you?” I shouted after him.
I also head to the dermatologist monthly where they cut and burn bits off. This time I had two squamous cell carcinomas. The treatment I’m on for melanoma has given me another form of skin cancer, but it’s not nearly as deadly!! Apparently we just slice them off and we’re done. Rarely metastasizes. It’s all relative I guess. I feel great today, Zel is working, and I’m lucky to be taking it. I am blessed.
Everyday I thank God that I am still here and pray that they can learn more about this terrible disease, quickly. Our daughter has skin just like mine and Dad’s, and she goes to the dermatologist regularly for mole checks. She has developed Vitiligo, which is an autoimmune disorder where her body is killing off some of the pigment cells in her skin. AKA the “Michael Jackson disease”. These are the same pigment cells (melanocytes) that have metastasized inside me, trying to kill me. What’s the link? They don’t know. I hear this often and it doesn’t get easier. I told a new oncologist friend of mine the biggest problem I have with them ALL is that they don’t know everything. Why can’t they know more? #2 is healthy and fine, and getting treated, but it’s scary. My mother has had Vitiligo for decades and is fine. What is with the skin in this family? We just don’t know.
So we pray and soldier on, and everyday I am blessed and thankful that they are making some advances against all kinds of cancer, especially melanoma. If only they could speed it up.