Friday, August 16, 2013

Look At Susie's Pictures!

I am about as white as a caucasian can get.  I'm Irish, Scottish and English.  You know what that means.

Freckles and wrinkles up the wazoo.  Oh, I hope the wazoo doesn't wrinkle too....

And constant worry about skin cancer and sunburns.

Add to that the fact that I live 99.57% of my summer outside, though I do seek as much shade as possible, and it's like I'm walking melanoma time bomb.

I wear sunscreen but as I slather it on and smell all those chemicals, I think about the irony that the lotion is what will kill  me, in trying to prevent what the sun will do.  It's one of those vicious circles I spend my summer swirling around in.

I like my dermatologist a lot because though she is quick, quick, quick, she has diagnosed bad stuff in people I know and had it removed and they are fine.  So really, I do think she knows her stuff.

I go in every year with  my list of wild ideas about which moles are poison and she reminds me that I say this every year and they are fine.  I'd like to get them all removed.  She tells me that each will leave a big scar and would I rather explain a scar than let people see a mole?

Umm, yes, please.

So, I went for my yearly exam yesterday and she did her usual chitty chat chatter thing, asking all kinds of questions and actually making conversation, while examining me from head to toe.  Sometimes, I worry that she either isn't really looking at me because she is so busy talking, or she isn't listening to a word I say because she is so busy focusing on my skin.

She has an assistant, I'll call her Susie, who writes down whatever she says.  I think she actually writes down what I say too, and then they both study up before they walk in the next year.  The doctor always walks in saying something like "oh still teaching French, are you?" or "how's the campground this time of year".

I hear her whisper to Susie just as she is about to walk in the door.  I imagine she is saying "this is the crazy teacher who thinks every brown spot is cancer, remember?  Where does she teach again?  Oh yeah, that's right"

So, after we had a nice chat about my new school and they said that everything I said I'm concerned about right now is what every teacher who walks in the door is saying this year- I think she sees just about every one of my colleagues, based on what she was saying- she asked me if I had any questions.

And I pointed to everything I point to every year and she again said they are fine and poked and prodded and said, no really, they are fine.  And then I asked about a couple of things and she was like "it's called aging.  Anything else?"

This is the doctor whose answer to me about wrinkles was "well, you could gain 5 pounds a year and then you wouldn't have facial wrinkles".  Touche.

Perhaps I am painting her in a bad light, making her sound sassy and fresh.  She is just quick and I believe, thorough and knowledgeable (based on my friends who actually have had bad spots removed).  But her manner could probably rattle some of the older patients that I see whenever I go in there.

At the end of the visit, she said this direct quote (except for the name):  "Ok, Susie's going to show you some pictures of skin cancer.  You're good (thumbs up) see you next year."  All chipper and energetic.

I felt like I was in some sort of trouble-  look what you did, you went and got a mole!

Or like it was punishment- that's it!  Now Susie's gonna show you CANCER.  I hope you're happy!

Or a police line up- ma'am can you spot the mole that might kill you?

Or some kind of dirty porn- Susie's gonna show you pictures....

So I laughed and said "you're going to show me pictures of skin cancer?"  I guess it's a new requirement or law or whatever.

So basically, she took out the brochure that used to just be sitting on the counter and she went over each type with  me.  Reading what the brochure said.  While I kept mmm hmmming her and saying "mine looks like that, yep, like that one too" and she shook her head.

This isn't the exact brochure but it's like this and I would hope that everyone, whether from school or a doctor has seen this brochure at least once.  Because skin cancer isn't a joke and it's not funny.  Hopefully this post is funny, but melanoma is nothing to ignore!

Linking here: 


  1. My husband is looking at me right now, because I am laughing so hard..."Ok, now Susie's going to show you some CANCER!" Ridiculous. First off, I am the whitest skinned girl ever...only I am Sicilian and Mediterranean, so go figure. I have tons of scary moles and I am also the crazy teacher lady at the dermatologist's office! Thanks for the laugh!

  2. I'm not sure how you managed to make a post about cancerous moles and a dermatologist funny, but you did and it was a riot!

    Thank you for sharing with the Clever Chicks Blog Hop this week!

    Kathy Shea Mormino
    The Chicken Chick


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