Home Forums Melanoma: Newly Diagnosed – Stages I & II Cancer Free – now what

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  • #21299
    gophertee
    Participant

    I do have a question. After the surgery and being cancer free (for one week now – wooohoooo)and the derm checking my entire body I feel I am in a better state than before. Now it seems I am SCARED of THE SUN!!! It’s like I cannot be anywhere in direct sunlight. I am going on a golf/fishing trip in one week for a benefit and literally thinking of cancelling.

    I went and bought some long sleev 35 & 50+ UV light t-shirts and also bought a 3 inch brim UV 50+ hat. All that with 4 bottles of 50+ lotion when I go outside. Am I overdoing it? I sure the he** do not want this again and what I can do today will help tomorrow.

    Is it fairly normal to be more aware and somewhat anal of going out in the sun after having going through the Melanoma, SLNB scare? What do you guys do? I work indoors (thank god) but I literally freak when I am asked to go golf or even cut the grass. Heck, I read 1 out of 4 Melanoma patients today STILL do not wear sunscreen.

    #60893
    goldengirl2011
    Participant

    Hey there! So happy to read that your results were negative.

    As for being scared to go out in the sun – that is a normal feeling, especially after first being diagnosed. I was the same way 2 years ago. Now I just cover up, use & apply sun screen often – and enjoy myself outdoors.

    It does get easier as time goes by, so live life!

    #60894
    cohanja
    Participant

    It is normal to feel that way. Then I had someone tell me, “The time to pay attention to your sun habits is BEFORE you get melanoma, not afterward. Afterward, the “horse is already out of the barn” and the damage is already done”

    #60895
    Ellis2ca
    Participant

    Actually, what you should do is go outside and say “THANK YOU, Sun…”

    The sun is not your enemy, it is your friend. Without the sun and the energy it gives us, there would be no life at all on Earth. Plants need it to grow… Animals need it… water evaporates because of the sun… YOU need the sun, so be THANKFUL that we have the sun that gives us life.

    But… too much of anything is not good for us… and too much sunlight on your skin is surely not good for your skin… but look at it like this: you ALREADY went through a malignant melanoma, and you survived intact.

    This is like measles… if you survived through measles when you were little, you are never going to get measles again… and if you DO get measles again, it will be such a light case that you won’t even KNOW that you had measles again…

    In the case of melanoma, the NEXT TIME you ever get a melanoma (IF you ever get another melanoma…) it will be SO SMALL by the time your doctor takes it off (Because now YOU and I are BOTH going to WATCH OUT for another melanoma… aren’t we?) that it will not even be a “T1 a”… it will be an “in situ”… WE will NEVER let a melanoma grow to be anything larger than that, will we? NOT YOU, OR ME.

    That means, we will never let it get through the top of the top layer of skin, because we are now “melanoma smart…” Aren’t we? (YES!)

    So… congratulations on being cured… but now, don’t freak out and punish yourself, and don’t punish the Sun… Be respectful of the sun, but it wasn’t the Sun’s fault that you got a melanoma… It was nobody’s fault… Don’t blame anybody, and don’t look for what to blame.

    It is through. It is over. You are safe. So cool it.

    Now go out and say “Thank You, Sun, I love you!” and enjoy the sun… with good measure.

    #60896
    gophertee
    Participant

    Thanks for the awesome reply everyone!! I am glad my cursing at the sun does me no good but understanding, educating and protecting myself better from the sun is on the front burner (whereas was always the back burner).

    To your point you are so right, the fact I have to see my DERM every 3 months is reassuring to catch this early if it happens again (which it won;t right) ;)

    I would rather go for my 3 month checkups versus waiting 3+ years like I did before.

    Again thanks everyone, I just wanted to make sure it was normal being scared/concerned of the sun whereas before I cared less. Well, I cared but you get the idea :)

    #60897
    Emoe18
    Participant

    I know how you feel about being scared of the sun. I have been cancer free for two weeks (although they decided against the SLNB so sometimes I get nervous that it’s still in there….but hopefully not!) I am a 22 year old female who really loves summertime. My fiance bought me a big floppy hat and I wear sunscreen a lot now, if I am outside for longer than 10 minutes I do sunscreen anywhere that the sun touches. I feel bad for the kids I nanny because they get doused in sunscreen before I even let them get out the door. If they were older than 18 months and 3 months I would show them my big ol’ scar and say “you don’t want this ugly thing on you.” I still LOVE the sun. Sometimes (with sunscreen on) I still lay out in it for a few minutes just to feel it touch my skin and warm me up. Don’t put your life on hold any more than you need to. Wear sunscreen, cover up and listen to your body and you will do great :)

    #60898
    Worrywart
    Participant

    Don’t put sunscreen on a 3 month old – it contains dangerous chemicals!

    I think sunscreen gives people a false sense of security. It’s best to get direct sun 20 min a day and sit in shade rest of the time. And remember, some sunscreens block UVB but not UVA. So you dont get a sunburn but you still get the DNA damage. I use broad spectrum but only when necessary.

    #60899
    cohanja
    Participant

    I heard an add on the radio yesterday for a sunscreen pill. . .seems absolutely crazy to me, but sure enough here it is: http://sunassure.com/

    I have no idea if this is legit or would really work. . and I don’t believe this kind of stuff is regulated by FDA like prescriptions are.

    #60900
    Catherine Poole
    Keymaster

    Emoe—listen to Worrywart sunscreen is NOT to be applied before 6 months and even then, much better to take the kids out during the early morning and late afternoon. Put a floppy hat on them and keep them in the shade at times too.

    We NEED the sun, it is the best source of vitamin D which is proven to keep your immune system strong. Children need it for proper growth. So as it was stated, everything in moderation is the key.

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