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September 18, 2012 at 2:51 pm #20634
Does anyone else at Stage I/IA ever just have a day where you’re sort of freaking out? I’ve learned most days to think that I’ll probably be ok from this melanoma, that statistically it probably won’t cause future problems for me. But, every now and then I’ll have a day where I just think of the potential that it could metastasize and everything that comes with that, and it’s really hard to get a grip on those days.September 18, 2012 at 4:14 pm #56555Catherine PooleKeymaster A freak out day is a good time to look into Mindful Meditation. (look up Jon Kabat-Zinn) he is the pioneer. It is scientifically proven to help cancer patients deal with stress. Practice 2x a day. It really helps.September 18, 2012 at 9:04 pm #56556wpatterson4ParticipantQuote:
Does anyone else at Stage I/IA ever just have a day where you’re sort of freaking out?
Pretty much any day that ends in “y” is one of those days for me. Funny how my freakout routine seems to follow my drinking schedule….JK.
A while back, I attempted to achieve peace by telling myself that the odds were overwhelmingly in my favor. It never worked. After a while I began to really face the possibility of my own death from this illness, even if that possibility is remote. So far, the latter strategy has been much more effective, as depressing as that sounds. That being said, I REALLY hope this is the last I’ve seen of melanoma.
With a wife and children, your situation might just be a little different than mine. As a single guy and science fiction fan, I have no child who depends on me for ice cream and pizza, so maybe my advice is misplaced.September 18, 2012 at 10:29 pm #56557
The irony is if I’m talking about someone else’s melanoma, I can be realistic. So, I’d say to you at 0.34mm, mitotic rate < 1, you are very low risk and have little to worry about. But, then when I think of myself, 0.33mm, mitotic rate < 1, I have intense fear and am sure one day this will get me. I can be logical and reasonable if I'm thinking of another person's IA, but then when I'm thinking of my own, I become irrational and pessimistic and assume the worst doom & gloom.September 19, 2012 at 12:16 am #56558 As hard as it may be to accept, the truth is someday, maybe tommorro or many years from now something is going to get all of us. Diabetes, heart disease, other cancers, west nile, car wreck, plane crash……etc. Who knows when or what. The bright side of your melanoma diagnosis 1) you caught it pretty early 2) it’s very thin 3) you’ve gone above and beyond on your testing, and everything is clear 4) you’ve educated yourself about the disease 5) You know what you have to do to stay on top of it. You can either be a source of inspiration and education to those that are not as fortunate as you are or you can intensify the fears that others and myself ( .88mm , Clark 1V , mitotic rate > 1 stage 1b ) have as well.September 19, 2012 at 2:05 pm #56559wpatterson4ParticipantQuote:
The irony is if I’m talking about someone else’s melanoma, I can be realistic.
Of course you can. It’s a different story when it comes to our own bodies.September 19, 2012 at 4:41 pm #56560
7spider, I’m not trying to intensify anyone else’s fears by having a bad day myself. I think it happens to all of us, like it or not. I’m not necessarily trying to be a source of inspiration for anybody either, but I’m also definitely not trying to intensify the fears of others. This is just the place many of us will come when we start having bad thoughts/fears.September 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm #56561 Maybe your not trying to scare people, but your constant ” oh my God why me ” attitude and your challenges to all the data and expert opinions does affect others. Everybody has bad days and issues with the disease but you are the only one that is on here using the forum like a Dear Diary. If you can’t come to grips with the phsycological effects of your melanoma then maybe you need some counseling or anti- anxiety meds. I’m sure you’ll disagree with that, cause that’s your continuous pattern.September 19, 2012 at 5:47 pm #56562 Maybe I misjudged what one of the purposes of sites like this are then. I thought it was not solely for obtaining scientific information about the disease, treatment options, etc. . I thought it also is for when you’re having a hard time with it, it’s a place to vent some of that. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe that kind of support is not most appropriate for here if it’s going to disturb others. I don’t think I have a “why me” attitude, I know “why me” – I had a lot of really bad sunburns when I was young and I have really fair skin and dysplastic nevi. That’s “why me.” This I know. As far as challenging data and opinions, I’ve heard enough first-hand accounts and read enough to know that there is not much known for certain about this disease – things that shouldn’t have happened according to the data and opinions do, and things that should happen according to the data and opinions don’t. So, I think questioning what’s out there is valid. Regardless, like has been said many times here, the numbers are what they are, but we’re individuals and you can’t always go by data and opinions. I disagree that I’m using the forum like a Dear Diary, I think I’m using it much like most other people – a mix of asking questions, obtaining information, and sharing feelings about it. If I’m using this forum vastly differently than others, then I’m just not aware of it I guess. Such a diagnosis probably causes different levels of anxiety in different folks, and, sure, I am probably at one end of that spectrum, but I don’t think I’m that far out there as you’d characterize me. I hadn’t really posted much for a while before the recent lung nodule scare; but, I was having a bad day mentally with it all so I thought I’d post and see how others maybe deal. I didn’t think it would cause such a stir.September 19, 2012 at 6:29 pm #56563 Like I said we all have issues and bad days. Sometimes you just have to man up and deal with, it’s part of life. I read all the posts and honestly nobody has more than you that are so questioning of everything. That’s why I sugg ested some professional help with your anxiety. I’m not trying to be mean, just honest. Nothing but good wishes and vibes to you, maybe some deep breaths and try some of that meditation stuff Catherine preaches. Think positive ! Wanna trade your 1a .34 for my 1b .88 😆September 19, 2012 at 7:13 pm #56564 No, I wanna trade my 1a for the life I had before all of thisSeptember 19, 2012 at 7:50 pm #56565 The other notion I don’t agree with is the “man up” concept that implies somehow if you’re male and diagnosed with a scary disease – if you show fear or you’re scared, etc. .that somehow you’re not manly or tough or you’re weak, etc… I don’t care male or female, this is scary period.September 19, 2012 at 8:32 pm #56566 Sorry, what I meant about man up had nothing to do w/ gender. It’s been over a year since your diagnosis, true ? It is what it is, can’t take back the sunburns as a youth, can’t take back the fact you didn’t catch it earlier than you did, but much earlier than so many people that didn’t. I think when you accept the fact that stuff happens, God works in mysterious ways sometimes. You can either deal with it and live your life as best you can or allow this to consume you.September 19, 2012 at 9:52 pm #56567krissy424Participant Honestly after my wide excision I’ve had no baseless fears about my melanoma (SSM Breslow .55.) I’m at peace that I have done all that was in my control.September 19, 2012 at 10:04 pm #56568 There ya go Krissy, couldn’t agree more. You did what they said to do and now pay close attention to your skin going forward. Onward !
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