As a 20 year old I was conscious about my body and enjoyed a tan. I was never a massive sunbed user but before going on holiday I thought I would get a ‘base tan’.
As I stood on the sunbed and swiftly looked down at my body, a dark patch on my arm caught my eye. It hadn’t really bothered me before but I just brushed it off as ‘skin cancer would never happen to me’.
Upon returning home I mentioned the dark, asymmetric mole to my Mam, who told me if in doubt, check it out.
I never made a specific appointment, but just by chance when I was at the nurses office for a prescription for my pill I mentioned it. “I’ll just get the doctor to have a check, that mole is a tad funny looking” she said.
December 4th 2015 I went for my appointment to be told I had stage 1a melanoma. At 21 years old I had skin cancer. I was numb. Without my family, boyfriend and friends I don’t know how I would’ve made it out of that dark place. Two days before Christmas, 23rd December 2015, I had my wide local excision. The surgeon took away an extra 1 cm away from the original scar and I was warned I would be left with a ‘mini shark bite’.
I am running the race for life in July to raise awareness and celebrate kicking cancers fat backside! Please stay safe in the sun and remember- factor 50 doesn’t mean you won’t tan, it just means your skin is safe for being 2x as likely to develop skin cancer. 🤞🏻