I receive several phone calls and emails a year asking me for my donation to many different cancer foundations. It's hard to give to them all and it's hard to say no. For my family, we have decided to give our donations to research for melanoma.
Melanoma is no joke. Melanoma is skin cancer.
Like many people, I once thought that skin cancer is for those who are always in the sun and never wear sunscreen. Melanoma is only something you get when you're older and you've been tanning your whole life. Melanoma is not a big deal.
Boy, was I wrong.
On December 26, 2010 my Aunt Aleisha passed away of melanoma. Aleisha was a 42-year-old mother of two boys Zack (now age 3) and Will (now age 5). Aleisha had very fair skin but had never once been in a tanning bed. She always wore heavy sunblock, a hat, and covered up very well when she was outside. Nothing could have stopped her skin cancer.
I feel extremely thankful to have a blog where I can educate others about the risks of melanoma. It's a very scary thing and nothing to play around with. However, not all stories end badly like my aunts. You choose your destiny.
It's so important to see your dermatologist yearly. That is the best way to catch moles that may look different and could be cancerous. It's also important to do self checks. Just like breast exams, you want to examine your own body. Watch your moles. Take note if they change in size, color, or shape. If you see anything that looks different, call your dermatologist right away. Better to be safe than sorry! Be sure to always wear sunscreen!! While that can't prevent melanoma it definitely can help. Finally, pale is the new tan. Our society is too hung up on having that dark, tan, sun-kissed look. If you spray tan, then that is great, but stay away from the tanning beds!!
There are so many wonderful people out there who have shared their journey with the world. Here are a list of great melanoma blogs that I follow and that you should too!
Chelsea is a 25-year-old who was diagnosed with melanoma a few years ago.
Rich was diagnosed with stage III melanoma in 2003.
Follow his journey!
Support skin cancer and melanoma awareness
All things melanoma
Nick, a twenty-eight year old, fighting stage IV melanoma
I just started reading this blog but it's amazing.
Jillian is a young mom diagnosed in 2010. This blog is written by her mother.
These are only a few amazing blogs. I will be sharing more throughout the month of May.