Where do I start? Well the beginning is as good a place as any, so here goes. This is either going to be cathartic or not, hmm will have to wait and see.
We got married in 1982; we were kids but had a fantastic honeymoon backpacking around Greece for 3 weeks. We were amused to discover that not one, but both of us, were allergic to mosquito bites and had fun every morning counting who had been bitten the most the previous night. Scratch scratch scratch. OH seemed to get over them better than I, who returned home with 2 particular nasty ones. One was one my eyelid and the other on my left calf. Within about 4 weeks my eye was fine so just forgot about my leg and got on with newly married life.
Not long after, despite being so young, we decided to start trying for a family. As I had been having “problems” since I was 15 we very quickly entered the infertility route. My leg at this stage had a slight red mark, similar to a burn that hadn’t really fully healed. It gave me absolutely no bother and what with all the other tests etc. never thought to mention it to anyone. To be honest you wouldn’t have seen it unless it was pointed out to you.
Time rolls on and we are the proud parents of a baby girl. In Jan 1989 one Saturday there was a programme on TV regarding skin issues, the following week my baby was so sick the dr had to be called. Totally out of the blue and without any planning, while he was in the house I asked what he thought of that, pulling up my trouser leg. Well the usual questions followed, how long, did it bleed etc.? He put me on a cream for a month and diarised another appointment. There was no change so he decided to send me to a consultant. The consultant was a good guy who, I discovered after, thought I had squamous cell, and he booked me in for a biopsy in the hospital. He said he would do his best not to do a graft considering I was the mother of an 8th month old. This was the first of many new men to come into my life – Gerry!
My admittance to hospital was funny in the extreme. Nurse looks at leg; does it hurt? Does it bleed? Etc. etc. she was just short of saying what the hell are you doing in here. Looking at me she could see I was no model so it wasn’t as if my legs were insured or anything ha ha. Wouldn’t I just love to meet this nurse now!!!!
So following 3 days in finally sent home and told to return to rooms to have stitches out. Blissfully unaware I ask my neighbour to drive me, non-weight bearing that I was, in I go and as he is taking out the stitches he mutters, not great news here, it was a malignant melanoma, however we got it all but I am sending you to St Anne’s (cancer hospital) for treatment but it won’t be chemo. Thank you bye bye. To say I left white faced it putting it mildly!