Category Archives: melanoma

Wall to wall sunshine

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Sunday 31st May

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Wall to wall sunshine

Bodies on the beach

Cooking away nicely

Sunscreen! I beseech

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Vitamin D is necessary

Please don’t get me wrong

But frying like a lobster

Damage could be life long

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So many burnt shoulders

Peeling, unsightly skin

D’you know what you’ve done?

What’s going on, within?

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Melanoma; skin cancer

Might not happen today

But a few years down the line

It’ll be nothing to downplay

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You can’t just cut it out

For it’s a sneaky beast

Lying dormant, then

Like a devil, released

.

Taking over your life

Biopsies, skin grafts

Scans and appointments

Normality’s in the past

.

Just always worrying

Asking when it will return

Scanxiety, melanoia

A real cause for concern

.

So slap on some sunscreen

And wear a big hat

Seek shade when it’s hot

Prevention’s where it’s at

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Melanoma awareness

Throughout the month of May

But it mustn’t stop here

Care for your skin everyday

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Love you forever

Beloved Angel son

xxxxx

Seven years ago today

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Saturday 2nd May

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Seven years ago today

Alien blob was cut away

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Melanoma diagnosis

Quite a fair prognosis

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More surgery to lymph nodes

And that really hurt loads

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Biposies, skin graft and scars

All added to my memoirs

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Started on a clinical trial

Bloods, obs, scans and checks worthwhile

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Lymphoedema a side effect

A small price to pay, I suspect

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Sunglasses, big hats and sunscreen

Now preventing the unforeseen

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Living with vigilance

To reduce the incidence

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Thinking of you my darling

Precious Angel son

xxxxx

Broom from the garden

Porthmeor, West End

Looking towards the Island

Quiet in the harbour

No waves at all

More hospital visits

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Thursday 14th November

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More hospital visits

My twice yearly check-up

Dermatology, oncology

Blood pressure could ease up

.

But currently

“N E D”

So very happy

All’s good, you see

.

“No

Evidence

Of

Disease”

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Scans and biopsies

Show all’s well

See you in a year

Fears to dispel

.

Six years post surgery

Life takes on a different persona

Melanoia and scanxiety

With metastatic melanoma

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Thinking of you always

My darling Angel son

xxxxx

Snow on the sides of the road in Oakhampton

Golden, autumnal colours in Exeter

Six years ago

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Thursday 2nd May

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Six years ago today

On the second of May

Surgery began

Because I liked to tan

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A mole upon my toe

Started to grow and grow

It was melanoma

Changing my persona

.

It’s not just skin cancer

Deadly, I found out after

Spreading to my lymph nodes

Anxiety overloads

.

But six years down the line

I sort of feel quite fine

No Evidence of Disease

I’m here; the day to seize

.

Feeling thankful

Living with vigilance

Wearing sunscreen

Melanoma Awareness

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A post from six years ago

A chilly Porthmeor Beach

Grey skies over the harbour

In need of colour!

Melanoma

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Wednesday 1st May

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Sunshine makes you smile

But can also kill

Put your sunscreen on

To enjoy life’s thrill

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Melanoma Awareness

The month of May

Not just skin cancer

Keep those rays at bay

.

New solar powered robin for my Angel

Pretty blues in the harbour

Quite a few on the beach in the corner

Lifeguards patrolling Porthmeor Beach

Sixty months of trial

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Thursday 15th November

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It’s been five years since my surgery

Five years of visits to oncology

CT scans and dermatology

Clinical trial and epidemiology

.

A melanoma on my toe

Found to be malignant, though

Cancer spread as it did grow

In my lymph system it did flow

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A skin graft, biopsies and excisions

Left with making difficult decisions

Change in circumstances and conditions

Conversations with surgical physicians

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Up my leg, to the top of my thigh

A lymphadenectomy made me cry

But five years on, I can’t deny

Happily giving cancer the ‘evil eye’

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I leave the hospital feeling relieved

For the positive news I’ve received

There is ‘no evidence of disease’

A great big outward sigh is breathed

.

I wished the same for you

But that was not to be

Your life cut short too soon

Angel son, my sweetie

.

xxxxxx

Appointments

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Tuesday 15th May

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To Exeter hospital

Matching underwear day

The clinical drugs trial

Appointments underway

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Dermatology for skin

Blood and obs with my nurse

Then it’s time for a break

From the medical universe

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Then upstairs to x-ray

CT scan with contrast

Back and forth through the tunnel

It’s all over at long last

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And the final stop will be

With my oncologist

Scanxiety sets in

Have to be an optimist

.

Now a long two week wait

For the consultant’s report

Just hoping all will be well

The days don’t turn out too fraught

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Thinking of you my darling

Wishing you were with me

Wishing things had been different

That you, a survivor would be

.

Sweetheart Angel son

xxxxxx

Five years

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Wednesday 2nd May

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Five years ago today

‘Twas on this date in May

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The first of many operations

To oust the cancerous mutations

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The journey of my left foot began

All because of that teenage suntan

.

An alien blob on my toe

What else can life, at me throw?

.

A lymphadenectomy

Biopsies sent to pathology

.

Malignant melanoma

Changed my very persona

.

Hats, long sleeves and sunscreen

Oncologists routinely seen

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A five year clinical drugs trial

Has all of my details on file

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Continuing to be sun-aware

Particularly with my skin care

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So here’s to the next five years

I have my hopes, but also fears

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Thinking of you as always

And all your innocent ways

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Darling Angel baby

Missing you like crazy

.

xxxxxx

Blue skies, but still a cool wind

Looking down on the harbour

My Left Foot – complete with Cinderella’s slipper, but without Daniel Day Lewis, and a lovely compression stocking on the right leg. (2.5.13)

PET scan

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Monday 18th December

  

On the last visit to my oncologist, following a CT scan, a small ‘gnurgly’ was seen on my spleen. It had been mentioned​ a couple of previous times to no consequence, but now the radiographer’s report suggested further investigation was warranted. So, no food since last night, and only water this morning. 

Upon arrival at the unit, just after 1:00pm, form filling was followed by blood sugar testing, which was fine. The technician then went to collect the radioactive trace injection. He returned carrying what looked like an extremely heavy tool box. I thought, ‘Wow, that must be a massive injection!’, but it was merely a huge lead-lined box to protect from the radiation. So then the liquid was pushed into my veins, the technician declared me radioactive ☢️☠️🤢☠️☢️  and I had to wait an hour for the liquid to reach all parts of my body……

The scan itself was fine: the first part was head to knees, taking about fifty minutes, back and forth, stop and start, don’t move…..Then I had to turn around for the second part: knees to toes, which only took twenty minutes. Time to go, and after over three hours in the unit, I was ready. It was now dark outside, the whole afternoon had disappeared through a tunnel…..And now I was starving and very thirsty.

A quick bite to eat and​ a cappuccino, then a drive home in the dark, whereupon I am now drinking copious amounts of water to flush out the radioactive trace. Apparently I must not go near pregnant women or young children for twenty four hours….

Glowing all the wayyyyyy………

Thinking of you my sweetheart, as always.

Beloved Angel son

xxxxxx


Homeward bound, after sunset

Lights of the cars mimicking how I feel…..

And, we came to say hello again

Your solar snowflake looked lovely

End of Year Four

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Tuesday 7th November

   

A drive up to Exeter early this morning, (in the lashing rain, with appointments at two hospitals, for my end of Year Four check ups), had me feeling rather anxious ~ scanxiety setting in……

I was diagnosed with metastatic malignant melanoma in 2013, and am on the Combi-Ad clinical drugs trial. It is an adjuvant therapy, combining two drugs to  (hopefully) stop the further spread of cancer.

First stop dermatology, for a full body skin check, (my unexpected excision a month ago came back as a benign melanocytic naevus). Both the trainee and consultant dermatologist agreed there was nothing unusual or suspicious to be seen. All is fine.

Second stop is to see my cancer trials nurse who takes vials of blood, and checks my blood pressure (a little too high, I think), temperature (ok), weight (too high, I think), and pulse (ok). I then fill out a “Quality of Life” survey. All is (mostly) fine.

Off down the corridor to medical imaging for a CT scan. Ouchy ouch, the radioactive contrast fluid was painful as it entered my vein. Hmmmmm, not too impressed ~ it has never hurt like it did today. Oh well. All is (now) fine.

Final stop is to see my oncologist, for another full body check. He has had a quick look at the scan, and can see nothing alarming, although he says I must wait for the full report from the radiologist. So all is fine. 

Another set of appointments are made for six months hence.

So there we are.

I just wish your treatment had proved successful. I wish that everyday. I am so sorry you had to suffer. I’m so sorry you didn’t make it. I’m so sorry.

My darling Angel son.

Thinking of you.

Love you forever.

xxxxxx