When I was younger, I thought that laying in the tanning bed and being super tan was a must! I had heard scary stories of skin cancer before, but that wasn’t stopping me. I thought bad things only happened to other people and those things would never happen to me! I wish I would have used my brain more often. You really couldn’t tell me anything back then.
A few months ago I went to the doctor for a regular check-up and she sent me to see a dermatologist to have a spot on my skin checked out. Little did I know at that time that my tanning days were over forever. The dermatologist biopsied 4 spots on my stomach. 3 out of those 4 came back as a compound melanocytic nevus with moderate dysplasia (pre-cancerous). This means that it’s just a matter of time before they turn into full blown melanoma. It could be years or it could be days. There’s no way of knowing which makes it important to remove it as quickly as possible. I’m not going to sugar coat it, this news was terrifying! I had lots of stitches from the biopsies and it was extremely sore.
Once the results came back, they had to remove the stiches and cut way deeper to remove all the precancerous cells. By the grace of God, they successfully removed all of the precancerous cells after the 2nd surgery! It was a very scary time for me and of course it was an emotional time considering summertime was right around the corner and I wouldn’t be able to swim because of the stiches. I had been cut on so much and I was scared to do anything that might lead to ripping a stich or stretching the scars. I couldn’t even wear a two-piece bikini because the sun could change the color of the scars! After a couple of breakdowns, I ended up confidently rocking one-piece bikinis this summer and drowning myself in SPF 50! (Don’t forget your sunblock!) Yes, I said confidently because I always try to stay confident and make the best out of every situation! I realized that my situation could be way worse! I will show you a couple of pictures from a few days after the last surgery I had. (The 4th incision was higher up.)
It has been a few months since the surgeries and my scars are healing well. Unfortunately, my journey with this has just begun. I have many more spots that have to be biopsied, but they are only removing 3 or 4 at a time. They are giving me a few months in between to heal before they start the next surgery! You may wonder why I am telling you all of this…
Well I am telling you because I feel like God has given me the opportunity to share my story. I want to raise awareness and hopefully save lives with my story. I want all of you beautiful ladies out there to realize that tanning in a tanning bed or the sun is not the only way to get a beautiful tan. Self-tanners are amazing! I WISH that when I was younger I had someone to tell me all of the things that I am telling you today. I probably wouldn’t have even listened, but I pray that you’re not hardheaded like I was and that you do listen. The truth is that I know that I could have prevented everything I have been through; the surgeries, the scars, the fear. You still have a chance to prevent all of that. That’s exactly why I chose to write about this.
With all of that being said, my next blog is going to be all about self-tanning! YAY! One question that I am asked on a daily basis is how do I get my fake tan to look so good. I have tried so many different brands! I’d love to share my latest routine with you. If you’re interested in knowing my favorite self-tanners and tips for applying, then please subscribe and stay tuned for my next blog!