* I’ve Joined the Club

Since I first learned that the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure [for breast cancer] would be held in Jerusalem on October 28th, I have had the date marked on my calendar. But a couple weeks ago I realized I would not be able to participate.

I recently went to see the dermatologist for my annual check of moles and spots (I’ve got lots, but nothing has ever raised a flag). I also wanted to ask the doctor to remove what I thought was a fatty deposit on the side of my nose near my eye, since it was constantly irritated by the nosepad of my eyeglasses. Earlier this summer my ophthalmologist had identified a small bump on my eyelid as a trivial fatty deposit, so when this similar-looking (in my mind) bump appeared on my nose later in the summer I was not alarmed by it.

It took the dermatologist only moments to identify this bump as a basal cell carcinoma (BCC), a non-melanoma skin cancer, and to schedule me for a Mohs surgical procedure. (A biopsy confirmed the visual diagnosis, of course). I won’t go into details; you can google for information.

I had the surgery yesterday. Cancer is gone. I am fine!

For the first 24 hours I’ve got a bandage on my face that makes me look like I’ve got two noses, but by this evening I’ll be down to a simple bandage. Internal stitches will dissolve. External stitches will be removed in a week. Until then, I am forbidden from doing any exercise/sports activity. So I will be at the Komen Race in spirit only.

I guess this puts me in the cancer survivor club, even though it doesn’t seem I belong there.

P.S. A few months ago I began taking supplements due to a vitamin D deficiency (besides diet, commonly caused by lack of sunshine/too much sunscreen), so it seems ironic that during this same period I developed a skin cancer that is caused by excessive sun exposure. Go figure.

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