hi there! i'm michelle, southern california based photographer and curator of the coco gallery.

welcome to my blog where i share my life, my latest adventures, photo projects, random nuggets and the occasional stray thoughts.

for clients: to view my portfolio just click on this link - theCOCOgallery.com. to book sessions please send me a message through theCOCOgallery.com or contact me via michelle@thecocogallery.com | 949.734.0604

Sunday, April 19, 2015

slow down with that "c" word

when doctors throw out that word "cancer" all the red lights go off...

it started with one spot on my jaw. the spot started growing and puffing up in the heat. i thought it was a rash of some kind. i didn't have time to pay attention to it. actually, maybe i just didn't make the time. then there was more than one spot. in fact there was starting to be a whole bunch of them. i finally remembered to ask the doctor about it and he dismissed me saying it was just age spots. interesting.

the following year, at my annual, i ask about the spots again, there's a few more now and they aren't going away and i'm not sold on them being age spots. he looks at my chart, tells me that i asked about them last year and he really thinks that's all they are (i'm making this guy sound kinder than he was. i really didn't like him but was too lazy to change).

last year, new insurance, new doctor, new opinions. this doctor doesn't want to be too dismissive so we start up on some creams to see what it does. nothing. a dermalogical referral, more creams and a biopsy later....

actinic keratosis aka precancerous lesions on the skin. primarily found on fair skinned people. there's that "c" word! totally buried in the middle of all that. but the truth is, it's NOT cancer. it COULD be, if i left it and didn't take care of it. bummed that i'm susceptible. i guess i'm more fair than i am brown. boo. so, yeah, not panicking. just taking care of it. so if you see me looking like i had a measles or chickenpox explosion on my face... it's just the cryotherapy treatment. it's not pretty but it's not permanent. more importantly it's taking care of the problem.


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