Once upon a time I was 14 years old and had a scary birthmark. The birthmark got scarier, grew red and angry, and then started getting painful. My parents thought perhaps this was a bad thing, so they took me to a dermatologist who said something to the effect of oh my god we have to take that thing off! So, a few weeks later and about 180 stitches later, it was gone. They had to cut all the way down through all my skin and fat until they hit muscle to be sure they got the whole thing, so there were 180 total stitches to sew me back up. A few weeks later the pathology on it came back as Melanoma- somewhere around stage 1A, so not a big deal but still freaking cancer for a 14 year old. Because they had removed the mole and a significant hunk of surrounding tissue, no further treatment was required.
Fast forward 20 something years and we have a magical mole on my left butt cheek. Not red, not growing, but painful to the touch. If i bumped it on a table or fell on my ass skating, i swear to you it hurt all the way to my toes. So, being me, i let it sit there. History of melanoma? So what? Let's just leave this painful ugly thing on my bottom rather than having it cut out. Yeah--enter some very persistent people-- my mother, my partner, my friends. So, anyway, I went to the dermatologist.
The dermatologist, a woman in her 50's ish, with a bit of a Russian or Polish accent, YELLED at me. She poked the mole, it hurt, she yelled again. So she decided that because of my history it had to go- RIGHT NOW-- which actually meant about a month from the appointment but considering the above, 1 month kinda = right now. So back i went and because of the history, they had to do the same kind of cut as before-- and because my bottom is significantly LARGER than it was when i was 14, going through all the layers of skin and fat was even more fun than the first time. I didn’t have nearly as many total stitches this time-- just about 8 on the top layer but they are weird looking. I did have a 4 inch incision on my left butt cheek. The incision did heal nicely i suppose—the doctor said “You heal very well” which I suppose is a compliment of some kind.
The great news is that the results came back benign and I can finally ride again! Yay!