Teej

28 and Feeling Great

 

My name is TJ and I am 28 years old. On November 11, 2014 (Veterans Day) I was diagnosed with Stage Ib malignant melanoma on my scalp. Needless to say, cancer was not one of the things on my radar at 28 years of age.

The story began back in March of 2014, when I decided to bleach my hair completely white. I used to dye my hair all sorts of colors as a rebellious youth, but as I got older (aka employed) it lost its appeal. However, last spring I got the crazy idea of dying my hair platinum blonde. I've always had naturally dark hair, so I never really paid attention to the small eraser-sized mole at the top of my hairline. 

Once my hair was bleached, it was impossible to ignore the dime-sized black blob in the shape of a heart. I knew I should get it checked out, but just couldn't seem to find the time and kept pushing it off for weeks. After all, it wasn't bothering me and I couldn't remember if it had always looked that way and perhaps it just looked more dramatic contrasted against the white hair.

Flash forward to May 2014, I finally asked for a referral from my primary doctor to see a dermatologist regarding the "mole". But, of course I was too busy and just couldn't fit it into my schedule so I put it off even longer. Around June, I noticed what I thought was a small zit growing under the mole. I tried to pop it, but nothing came out. By October, the tiny pin-head zit had swelled to comprise 60% of the now 12 mm wide "mole". Everyone has heard of the ABCDE of melanoma, and let me tell you this one even had the XYZ.  By the time I had the biopsy performed at the end of October, I already knew what I was going to hear when the results came back. Sure enough, it was nodular melanoma.

I had WLE on November 18, 2014 and while that was being done I also had 8 lymph nodes removed from near my ear and neck. All lymph nodes came back negative for cancer, thankfully. It's been almost a month since my surgery and I feel great. I've noticed lymphedema in my neck and near my cheek but I've been trying to massage it away. I could not have had a better surgeon for my surgery. He was very plastic surgery-oriented and now that it's been a month from surgery, the scarring is minimal and you would never know I had a massive stretch of skin removed from my hairline.

The last month has felt like a whirlwind. I've never felt so mortal. Even harder is trying to explain everything to friends and family, because inevitably, they all say, "But you're fine now, right?" Yes, I am fine right now. I do not know what my future holds, but I am fine right now. I try not to divulge too much information because most people don't know too much about melanoma and think it's just a matter of getting a mole removed. 

This forum has been such a wonderful resource for me. I admire all the stories of others on here and appreciate the good, bad, and everything in between stories. One thing this site has taught me is that melanoma is as unique as the people it afflicts.

Thank you to everyone on here,

TJ

Mon, 2014-12-15

Comments

See my story on my web site at www.angelfire.com/fl4/mft .

I am to be treated with Keytruda in at least 4 thirty minute infusion every three weeks at the 

Sarasota Cancer Center.

i was delayed in treatment because my podiatrist did not recognize my blacked toe nail as melanoma.

Had I been biopsied immediately as suggested, there is a good chance my melanoma could have been stopped from spreading and metastasizing.

Now I am to take Keytruda  and I am risk from the life-threatening side effects.  Due to my age of 86, I am not eligible to have treatment with interferon.

I am trying homeopathic things in addition to the prescribed melanoma medications as long as the doctors approve them.  One is employing an oxygenator in hopes of getting more oxygen into my system.  An other was Graviola which may have caused nerve problems so I stopped that.

I take Super Greens, baking soda and hydrogen peroxide  25 drops three times per day in low sodium V8 Juice.  I also take lemon and lime juice 3 times per day.

I avoid sugar and carbohydrates as much as possible as supervised by my wife and our friend Carol Damico

who studies cancer fighting nutritional products and aids.

See my website at www.angelfirecom/fl4/mft for the complete story of my case until now.  

It includes a video of the treatment of a Texan from discovery until his passing which many have found helpful

as they try to anticipate their own fate as I do.

We have a splendid cancer support group in Sarasota called The Center forBuilding Hope with many sessions as shown in the monthly calendar.  There is a wonderful Help Line that provides information on all available support activities.

Milton Thrasher 941 966-9172

 

 

cyndy jones - (8/16/2015 - 4:11pm)

thank you for sharing and please keep this updated.  I was diagnosed in July 2015,    Feeling mortal describes the way I feel....I couldn't describe it before.  

  Mine was a big  knot on my knee. i have a big incision and 2 lymph nodes were clear and all tissue was clear.  the nodule looked like a keloid from one of my knee surgeries.  I have never seen a picture of anything like it.  pale pink about 3/4 inches diameter and 3/4 inch high.  I am stage 2 because in was ulcerated.

  I am trying to get over my fear.  I am going strictly organic to give my body strength to fight and as much vegetarian as I can.  And absolutely no sugar.  I did not know that cancer loves sugar.

  I thought I would get some kind of skin cancer from all the days on the beach when I was young.  I am 68 now and I have a lot of living to do!

  keep up your posts

Debbrock - (9/16/2015 - 11:25am)

Thanks for sharing your story , hope all is well.