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My Melanoma Cancer Story

I recently had 2 friends get scary cancer diagnosis – one with stage 3 rectal cancer and one with stage 4 prostate cancer.  They are in my thoughts as post this and was hoping this might help inspire people go to their dermatologists and get regular cancer screenings.

I recorded the videos to tell the story as well as some highlights below.

Video 1 – the day of the diagnosis

Video 2 – the day after the diagnosis

Video 3 – Perspective and thoughts about 9 months after diagnosis

In the summer of 2022 after Covid 19 was finally over for the most part I had a scab on my cheek that was not healing  After my wife pestered me about it for months I finally went to a dermatologist to get it checked out.  Sidenote they say that married men live longer and the fact that my wife convinced me to go get checked out is the reason why.  The Dermatologist thought the scab on my neck deserved some freezing treatment but also wanted to send a biopsy for a mole on my back. A few days later the mole on my back came back as Melanoma and this is my story of what I went through.

I have had some good friends (Nicole, Zach, Laurie, Sean, and Katie) get Cancer and come out on top.  One of them was given less than a year to live and its now 7 years later 😊  I had their optimistic outcomes to give me my initial positive attitude.

I had been meaning to record a video on change and given the big change that one phone call had I recorded 2 videos.  One the day of the news and one a day later.

The actual cancer stuff was a lot of appointments and waiting.  We went to 2 oncologists that said about the same thing and we went with the surgeon that could get us in first.  They had to take out some lymph nodes out of my armpit as well as cut out the melanoma.

The surgery was scary – I remember saying goodbye to Emily as they wheeled me back and crying a little.  I knew in a few minutes I would be asleep and it felt like I might not wake up if something went wrong.  Emily works in the medical field and assured me that driving to the hospital that morning was statistically more dangerous than the surgery but it still feels scary.  Plus there is the unknown of what the results of the surgery will be.  How far will the cancer have spread and how much longer will the treatment be?

The biopsy from the surgery came back as not showing any cancer, which was a huge relief and also amazing as the initial biopsy had cancer beyond the margins of the biopsy so in some amazing way my body actual killed off whatever cancer was left.  I don’t really understand it but think that my positive attitude may have helped me to heal. They mentioned that taking the biopsy also caused the skin around it to heal and that may have helped for the cells around it to heal.

After all of the Melanoma stuff was finally dealt with about a year from when I first went in it turned out that the scab on my cheek was a Basal cell cancer (not as serious) but would require a MOHS surgery.  I had that completed last month and feel like I am finally cancer free!  I feel basically the same as I did before except I feel super lucky and will definitely continue to go for more scheduled screening exams 😊

I have 4 goals for writing this –

  1. To inspire people to go to a dermatologist or primary care doctor and get screened. I was so, so, so, lucky that I caught this when I did.  It is super annoying but it can save your life.
  2. Stay positive – whether you have a cancer diagnosis or just had a bad day or week – if you stay positive and grateful for what you have then it will help out things in perspective and maybe change your life. Staying positive can help cure you.
  3. Live your life – take some chances and risks, try something new outside your comfort zone
  4. Be thankful for all that you have. I just heard the story of thinking of 80 year old you and how much they would want to come back to today.  No matter how much the kids are crying, fighting, and how stressful work is they would give anything to be back to this moment if they could.




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