Tuesday, July 24, 2012


On Friday, July 20, 2012, I received results from the pathology exam of the growth removed from my back. The edge analysis was negative. This means that the minor surgery has apparently removed all of the cancer. This is good news and should be a relief. Now I'm just waiting to feel relieved.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


As of today, and for the time being, I am a cancer survivor. Perhaps on the lower rungs of that ladder. Yesterday, my dermatologist removed the offending growth from my back, just below my right shoulder blade. The incision is four inches long and has two layers of stitches. Properly anesthetized, the actual minor surgery was not painful. This morning, with the meds worn off, the site hurts a bit. I have to return on August 1st to have the stitches out. The doctor said they would be doing an "edge analysis" of the removed growth to ensure they took enough to "get it all." He said he would define this removal as an "early detection" and I should have no further problem with this particular growth. The literature they gave me quotes an "85% cure rate with early detection." Time will tell.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Whether 'tis EZier in the mind to suffer...

Squamous cell carcinoma. A type of skin cancer. It is known to spread faster than basal cell carcinoma and can spread to other parts of the body to include internal organs.

I've read that a diagnosis of cancer changes your life. Everything. The way you think, what you choose to believe, what you choose to do, how you feel. I received my diagnosis today by telephone. Other than that it was a very normal day -- I met with clients and with employees, visited with family. So far all I feel is very tired, weary.

The fact that I'm 1,500 miles from home and here to attend the funeral of my sister-in-law whom we lost last Monday to cancer may contribute to my feeling of weariness.

At my ripe old age, I have often wondered what it would be that would end my life. I've actually had a low-grade morbid curiosity about that since I was a child. This may be it--the wondering may be over.

But probably not. I'm scheduled for minor surgery to have the cancerous spot on my back removed in less than a week from now. The literature tells me that, caught early, this cancer is generally treatable, and often does not return, but that I am now and for the rest of my life more prone to skin cancer than if I'd never had it. I am to be vigilant. Right now, I'm just tired.