Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Try This And See What Happens


I once had a growth on my face, a small flowering of red spots that I feared was cancer (all those years in the sun as a lifeguard, baking myself with baby oil and Crisco as a child), my aversion to any kind of self-protective measures catching up with me. I went to my doctor at the time, who didn't know what it was either. He gave me a tube of Retin-A and said, Try this and see what happens. Nothing happened. I came back in three months, and he had some dry ice to try and burn the growth off, but not before showing me a trick he does at parties where he pours the dry ice on a seat and watches it evaporate in the air. Not exactly David Copperfield, I know. The dry ice hurt like all billy hell and gave me an angry-looking patch of skin, but the growth remained. In the tedious process that is the HMO way, he finally referred me to a specialist who froze and lasered the area -- it wasn't cancer or some flesh-eating disease -- they were a cluster of warts. Oh the drama!

This final procedure also hurt a lot, but I was brave and even received a lolipop for not crying, something that my childhood doctors didn't do. The lolipop thing also happened when I got a cyst dug out of my back in my twenties -- perhaps destiny has it that I should experience these pleasures now when I can appreciate them. At any rate, I exhaled when my dermatology nightmare drew to a close and walked out into the lobby, reassuring myself that I didn't look that bad. A small child started to scream and cry when he saw me, clinging to his mother's leg and yelling, What happened to that girl? For almost a month, I got that reaction everywhere I went, albeit in the more muted manner of adults. As the area began to bruise as a prelude to healing, nearly every time I went to a store, I got the stage whispers and was even passed the name of a battered women's shelter on a slip of paper by a woman in line at the Safeway. Don't bother saying anything, honey, she said. I won't believe you. She walked out before me and waved. I didn't wave back as I dug money out of my wallet to pay for my Count Chocula and Dr. Pepper. I would have smiled, but it still hurt to do so and after all, I still needed to pay.

Michelle's Spell of the Day

"From error to error, one discovers the entire truth." — Sigmund Freud

Cocktail Hour

Drinking music suggestion: The Essential Waylon Jennings

Benedictions and Maledictions

Happy Wednesday!

10 comments:

Dr. Mabuse said...

You just can't beat a good medical specialist.

Let's go Krogering said...

I can't find Count Chocula in the cereal aisle anywhere. Bummer.

Special said...

Did you make that thing you're holding in the photo, Michelle? What's it called cause I'm a art challenged person. Is it a Halloween gift from Shawn Connery?
Can you get me Shawn Connery's autograph?

Anonymous said...

aww. I'm sorry about your skin dilemma! Don't HMO's bite the big one? I think that dress in the picture is simply beautiful Michelle!

paul said...

Cajun Queen one special platter comin up RockonFoxyTigerLady
O Mighty Isis Shazammmmm
R2 C2!

JR's Thumbprints said...

Yeah, I've been through some skin trauma of my own--the second stage melanoma diagnosis. But when I had surgery on my sinuses, they packed my nose and put tubes in my ears. Man did I look like hell. Then my medical coverage tried to say it was cosmetic surgery and they wouldn't pay for it. Obviously they never saw my nose, if they had, there would be no questioning the coverage.

Anonymous said...

what can one see in a double mirror, perhaps an indefinite reflexion. what one can see in a 908 mirror? A total disappearance.

Anonymous said...

a diorama

John Ricci said...

Dear Michelle, such a lovely view and post, as always. That's an interesting cocktail dress. I like it and the pose and I am so glad you recovered from the procedures. To you and your charming blog, a champagne Bravo!

Laura said...

Sorry to hear about your skin problem. Thank God it wasn't cancerous. Still, it sounds like it was a terrible experience to go through.