Curious Constellations

I have some interesting and odd spots on my skin. Like some living astral phenomenon, one could spend a lot of time mole-gazing and making varied celestial dot to dot creations across my skin. A triangle… the Southern Cross… look Ma, the Big Dipper! I have moley skin. So did my mother. And she had melanoma at my age.

Last week, my friend Julie posted about a small innocent looking mole on her belly. It turned out to be dysplasic. She posted a picture of it and said she had to have it removed.

Huh.

Once I was done reading her post, I lifted my shirt up and stared down at the brown blips connecting the Big Dipper. Her mole looked a whole lot like so many of mine. In fact, I think I had her mole about five times over just where I had lifted up my shirt.

I don’t think five minutes had passed before I was on the phone with the closest Dermatologist I could find. They could see me next Monday. Perfect. I’ll be there.

Today is Monday and, after being looked over with a very fancy brand of flashlight in the doctor’s office this afternoon, the verdict is in. I too have a small innocent looking mole camped out on my tum that needs to go. Just like Julie, it shows signs of mild dysplasia which means it may harbor potentially pre-cancerous cells. After next Monday, the Big Dipper won’t be quite so big after all.

So how do I feel about all of this? Actually, I feel pretty good. I am glad I made that call and had my mole-gazing done by a professional. I am thrilled that there is nothing too serious going on. And I am relieved I caught this one sly spot before it it turned on me and potentially changed my life down the road.

And I am kind of inspired by the power of blogging connections and the change writers can affect just through words. Julie’s post slapped some sense into me. Duh. Go get checked. I live in Florida – land of excessive and uber damaging sunlight – and I have a history of skin cancer in my family. What, did I need sky writers to get me there?

Nope. Just a writer, another blogger, telling her story.

I hope I inspire some of you to go get checked. And if you would like to learn more about taking responsibility for your health, check out the American Cancer Society’s new campaign called Choose You.

So back to mole gazing but with a decidedly more watchful eye.

I think… yep, I think I just found Orion’s Belt.

6 comments ↓

#1 Deb Rox on 06.07.10 at 7:13 pm

Wow. This is why I love blogs too. Good for you for breaking all of the barriers for a skin check and getting it nabbed early.

#2 Julie on 06.07.10 at 8:11 pm

Just a big :)

#3 Al_Pal on 06.07.10 at 9:43 pm

Ahhh, that’s great. My mom has very peaches&cream skin, and was a sun-worshipper as a teen on the few days of the year they HAD sun in the NW. She had a little skin cancer removed from her calf years ago.

My skin’s not nearly so fair–I have a few constellations, but not galaxies, like you or her–but when my Man & I happened upon a free skin cancer screening RV the other year, we used the service, since we don’t have healthcare.

The doctor was very nice and helpful, and said that we were mostly fine–but that a couple of them, we should take a photo of & stash it somewhere safe, to look every once in awhile & make sure the size/border etc hadn’t changed.

(& for anyone who doesn’t know:

Asymmetry
Border
Color
Diameter

are the watchwords of what makes a suspicious mole!)
Al_Pal´s last [type] ..Sensitivity: I have it.

#4 Miss Britt on 06.08.10 at 5:28 am

I keep stumbling across this sort of thing in connection with “Choose you”, and the last time I wondered “how do you get checked?”

So, you answered that. Did you feel stupid calling and saying ‘uh – can you just look at my skin and make sure I don’t have cancer?’
Miss Britt´s last [type] ..This oil spill? Not BP’s fault. Not really.

#5 Maria on 06.08.10 at 6:21 am

Hilariously (I guess) I got checked cause of people whining about Dooce whining about her mole removal.

Had to have four sliced off and surgery one one on my thigh last July.

…I need to make another appointment. I guess I’ll do that today.
Maria´s last [type] ..One Step at a Time

#6 Diane Davis on 06.08.10 at 6:41 am

Bob and go twice a year for checks,as both of us have had basal cell leisions removed. My Dad had most of the top of one ear removed due to skin cancer. Thanks for spreading the word,Caroline!

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