Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Port Townsend, Washington

Another lovely city by the sea... they boast many days of sunshine every year... It is a small town with great shops and scenic views from every vantage. This year on June 18th the town hosts its very own Secret Garden tour. Lots of fun for all ages... this photo is courtesy of www.52perfectdays.com One of my favs...

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Sandra's Valentine's Day journey with Cancer

On Feb.14, 2011, my daughter and myself proceeded to a local hospital to have a small cancer removed from my right side of my 56 year old face. A journey I thought would be quick and very easy. No sweat... well... eating breakfast I found myself getting anxious, mainly wondering how long would it take, would the restroom be close, would it hurt? Typical for a hospital visit for most of us. We arrived on time, checked in and proceeded into a small clean surgery room, shortly the nurse and doctor arrived. I was nervous, but he seemed confident I would be fine. He explained everything as we started .He would be using the MOHS system of surgery. One numbing shot, then another and another, 6 or 7 in all. I could no longer feel my face, that was strange enough. Then he began, what was always my face, would be no more. I closed my eyes... I never moved, opening just one eye at precisely the wrong time. I saw the tumor as he was removing it. I almost screamed! It almost looked like it was alive. I thought I have to get through this, I can't get up and run away, all I can do is wait. I was bandaged and sent to another room with my daughter waiting. I thought I was done... no, no, more surgery as there was more cancer.
Then more numbing shots and more time cutting. Finally, it must be over soon. Then off to another room, then the reconstruction began. Thirty minutes of sewing, stitching and bandaging. Finally, I was done. Cancer free at last! A very long day and hopefully I will never have to do this again. The last 3 months have been challenging and interesting. Going into the grocery store and being asked "what happened?" and all the looks have given me a new and positive outlook on people who have facial scars and deformities. Gut wrenching, and inspiring. I still have a scar and maybe always will. I'm free from cancer... and that is what matters most. No more sunburns or taking my days on earth for granted. I for one will warn others to protect their skin and visit a doctor of dermatology often. They can catch those pesky little problems before they get larger. Don't put it off... go get checked for skin cancer! Be careful in the sun, but also enjoy life... life is for living.