Pictures Don't Lie

 Back when I thought a everyone looked prettier with a tan



Then I got diagnosed with melanoma.














   
First surgery, in 5 separate areas, 
4 SNB's and the wide excision:
                       January 2011.






Full lymph node dissections in 2 areas:
                       March 2011











Before the 2nd surgery, after the 2nd surgery (3 days later!), and being released from the hospital on day 5. Lovely drains, yeah? 



16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing these graphic pictures!!! Although I don't visit tanning beds religiously these pictures will FOREVER keep me out of them. Of all the facts, stories, and article I've read these seem to be an actual wake up call.

Sending lots of love so you can continue to fight strong!

Chelsea said...

Thank you so much! I can't explain to you how HAPPY it makes me when people say they will forever stay out of tanning beds! Yes!!! :-) You made my day! (And it's only 6:45 am!)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing. I am a melanoma survivor, but only have one big scar. I use it to remind my kids to wear sunblock. I may have to show them your pics. Thanks,
Colt

Tish said...

I am a runner and often find myself out in the sun (w/o sunblock or a shirt). No lie, these pics have scared the bejeebers out of me. I'll be loading up on SPF 100 for tomorrows run

Evan said...

As a runner, I often find myself out in the sun, w/o a shirt, and no sunscreen. Your pics have scared the bejeepers out of me. I'll definately be loading up on the sunscreen and wearing a shirt for tomorrow's run. I'm sorry you had to go through that.

*dana k* said...

thank you for sharing ! just had my wide excision today and thank god for your blog which has helped me tremendously throughout my recent melanoma diagnosis at age 28. uou are very brave and i admire ur couragi

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing these pictures and your story with the world. Please know they made a huge impact on me and I'm going to forward your blog to all of my friends. Having a tan if just not worth it. Pictures really do say a thousand words. You're an amazing person. Thank you.

Sarah Beth said...

You are awesome. Awareness is everything and I think God has a very special purpose for you, my dear :)

Jenny Strickland said...

Just found your blog through the Me, Myself and I link up!

Thank you so much for sharing your pictures! Your right... They don't lie!

I used to think tan was the only way to be... I would lay in the tanning bed everyday during my lunch break and I rarely wore sunscreen. That all changed when one of my friends got diagnosed with Melanoma. That opened up my eyes! Its not worth it!!!

I haven't been in a tanning bed in over 2 years now and always wear sunscreen and a hat when I am outside!!!

I look forward to reading your blog.

lesley: the dream tree said...

that is so scary to have happen at such a young age. thanks for sharing the pictures!

Stephen Glasgow said...

I work at a hospital marketing department and we just got done doing a huge promotion for Breast Cancer awareness. Although a wonderful cause, at the same time it was frustrating knowing how much attention other forms of Cancer dont get. People don't realize just how serious Melanoma really is. My wife tanned as well :(.

THANK YOU for your blog! I will be following it, and if you need some volunteer graphic design work to support your site let me know! I would humbly submit my graphic design powers of sheer awesomeness to help you kick Mel's a$$!!! :)
- Steve

Anonymous said...

You are even more beautiful now, with your hard-won wisdom and generosity of spirit in sharing it. Many blessings.

Unknown said...

NO tanning beds!! I had melanoma when I was 18. LOVE your blog. You're saving lives!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing your story I have had 1 melanoma in situ an numerous atypical spots removed surgically. I have thick skin so my scars are ugly I'm not happy with my dermatologist as I find he is cut happy then his PA told me today it's in your genetics an the sun damage you've had he basically made me feel like I was either going to catch it before it formed or die from it. So sick or the way they make me feel in looking for a new dermatologist. He has made my body look like a cutting board

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your story. I was recently diagnosed with Malignant Melanoma. I am terrified of what my future holds. I just had 3 excisions. It has not spread but I can't shake that I have not seen the last of it. I have two small children and I can't help but to think I may die of this before they are grown. I have a mole on the sole of my foot that come up and they say it is fine but it has worried me so much that I have been walking different to avoid putting pressure on the site. Ugh.

Anonymous said...

I was looking for my brothers blog, "Fun with Melanoma," but ran across yours! You are a brave and strong woman. And about to be a mother! Congratulations! I will pray for you. Thank you for your blog. Cheryl