Monday, January 25, 2010
Time for Annual Freak-Out
This is the time of year, when I go in for my annual skin exam to make sure all of my moles are normal and not changing and turning into cancer. I have written several times about my skin cancer melanoma experience (which thankfully was caught early), so I am sure this is no surprise to you. Well this year, I haven't been nervous. I have watched my moles all year and know that nothing new has grown or changed. So, I thought I would have escaped this annual panic. Not so.
You see, I am married to a man who refuses to go to the doctor for anything and he has never had his moles checked. I have asked him to go and he always says he is fine. Well, this year, I was determined to make him go, which made me freak out about his moles. He has one in particular, that I knew was new and it was black. (Melanoma means black cancer and anytime a mole develops a black spot, you need to go in and get checked.) But, a small perfectly round black mole is considered normal (but then again, if it is new, it might not be normal.) So, I started trying to remember when I first noticed it. Was it new or had I just noticed it 6 months ago and he has had it longer? Was it changing? Was it smaller six months ago? Are the borders irregular or I am just imagining things? Is it getting shades of red in it? That can be bad. I tried to be casual when I was looking at it when he had his shirt off (so he wouldn't know I was acting crazy) but I knew something had to be done, when in the middle of the night, I had a flashlight on it while my husband slept and I studied it against pictures I had found on-line. (I finally figured out I was acting crazy and went to sleep.)
Finally, I called Dentist husband in tears at his office and said, "I will not be widow at 40 because you refuse to have your moles checked." The tears worked and he let me make an appointment. (And, he might have woken up when I was looking at it with the flashlight in the middle of the night.) I made the lady who was scheduling the appointment write in the chart, "Wife is freaking out and losing sleep about this mole. Make doctor remove it even if he thinks its nothing."
So today, Dentist husband went in for a full body check. That mole was looked at and considered "not a problem but because your wife is nuts (ok, that wasn't the word he used but you get the idea), I will compromise and freeze it off. In a month, if there is still some mole tissue there, (which there won't be), come back and I will biopsy it."
So now, I can go about my normal life and find something else to freak out about. But at least now I know, that my husband's moles are fine. I go in for my annual check in two weeks. Maybe I can delay my freak out about that until just before the night of my appointment. It is exhausting business dragging out the freak out as long as I have this time.