Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Hello, Cancer, My Old Friend...

o/~ I wish you'd get the fuck off of my skin.... o/~
So the doctor called last night. When he biopsied me two Fridays ago, his parting words were "And hey! No news is good news, right?"
Obviously, when I heard his voice, I assumed it was not good news.
I seem to be on an every-other-year schedule: in even-numbered years, he finds a lesion to biopsy. Twice before, it's been basal cell carcinoma. He didn't mention what it was this time as he was focused on scheduling surgery (and I didn't ask because clearly he was pulling OT), but since he didn't seem to be panicked about it, I take some comfort there.
The location is odd, as well: it's just about where my bathing suit line would be on my back and it feels pretty deep, based on the scab from the biopsy. Odd, because I rarely go out in the sun without a shirt and sunscreen, but things happen. Might have happened on a dive boat. Might even pre-date my first cancer surgery, for that matter, when I might have spent more time at beaches.
It doesn't matter. It does worry me, tho. Is this a Russian Roulette thing? I've ducked serious cancers twice now. Does it eventually catch up with me? Melanoma? Keratosis/Squalmous cell? Melanoma are pretty aggressive cancers, and can metastasize.
This whole thing creates an uncertain low-level depression in me. It's the uncertainty. It feels constraining.
I have cancer. I accept that. I feel lucky with the kind of cancer that's bubbled up, but I also know that cancer will be with me for the rest of my days. I have to keep a careful eye on things like my skin and other body parts.
I like to picture cancer as an Internet troll, something to be beaten and mocked mercilessly, but at the end of the day, there's too much living to do to worry endlessly, obsessively, about it.
The Gary Ruppert of my body, if you will.
Still, even Internet trolls can surprise you and knock you back a step or so. It's been about twelve hours since this puppy popped his head up, and I'm sure by the end of the day I'll be fine, riding my bike and screaming at cab drivers again.
And it's kind of comforting knowing I'll have a "friend" for the rest of my days...