Funniest + Sunburn = Seriously?
Before I go on a big long rant that I really am too sleepy for--thanks Rising Star for keeping me up too late--I have to admit that this probably would not have bothered me pre-melanoma. I would have looked, cringed, maybe even giggled, and moved on. But life after melanoma involves taking things more seriously than other people. A sunburn to me is the thing I can absolutely never get again. A sun--cough *Tanning Bed* cough--burn, now, is what made me sick.
What's funny about that?
So I joined in with my friends and responded to Ellen's request. Instead of the sunburn pictures--which I have many of--I sent a photo of myself post-melanoma. Most people think I probably have one scar to choose from. At this, I laugh.
(The site of the first melanoma.)
Melanoma was found in lymph nodes here...
And melanoma was found here...
(This mole was melanoma (in-situ) as well, March 2013.)
The site of the most recent borderline melanoma in-situ.
The only places where I don't have melanoma scars are on my feet, my scalp, and my lady bits. Every where else has been marked either by melanoma or by trying to prevent melanoma. Both arms, both sides of my neck, my legs, my belly, my back xA LOT, and even my face. (Heading in next week for another surgery on my face. Yes, I'm still waiting for my appointment. I don't want to talk about it.)
As I said to Ellen, "I know you requested photos of sunburns, and I have plenty of those, but it's because of those burns that I was diagnosed with stage 3 malignant melanoma at age 23. Encouraging others to send photos of their sunburns is sending the wrong message. There is nothing funny about a sunburn, Ellen. Nothing. Sincerely, Still A Fan."
I'm proud of my friend Christina for bringing this contest to our attention and for all of my melanoma friends who took the time to speak out and explain why a sunburn is no longer something to joke about. Would we ask folks to send in photos of them smoking cigarettes?
A Sometimes Drama Queen. ;-)