Mole or Freckle??

The definition of freckle from the Merriam Webster online dictionary is this: any of the small brownish spots in the skin due to augmented melanin production that increase in number and intensity on exposure to sunlight.

The definition of mole from the MW online dictionary is this: a pigmented spot, mark, or small permanent protuberance on the human body. I wasn’t completely sure on the word “protuberance” so I looked that up too. It means: something that is protuberant (which led me to the definition of that which is:) thrusting out from a surrounding or adjacent surface often as a rounded mass.

So – I learned a new word! Yea me…

When Seth was born (a whopping 10 years, 2 1/2 months ago) I noticed a brown spot on the bottom of this right foot. The pediatrician’s never said anything about it for FIVE years. Then one day at his pediatrician’s office a new doctor saw him and she noticed it and said “You need to get that checked out – cause it’s not a freckle, it’s a mole.” Can you say dropped a bomb?

They gave us the number for a dermatologist in Hixson – which is about an hour from our house if you drive the speed limit – which I do not half the time. So I took Seth’s five-year old self over there and they sat us in a room full of baseball memorabilia. It was kind of awesome.

The doctor came in with an assistant and sat down and checked out Seth’s foot and without anything else said “We need to do a biopsy – today. It’s a mole growing into his foot instead of out.” Holy crap. Now – I’ve said it before, if you prepare Seth for something that might hurt (like needles) he’s totally cool with it. As long as you do it in plenty of time before. We had five minutes. I explained to him what was going to happen while the doctor and his assistant went out of the room to get everything. He automatically started to cry and whimper. They came back in and Seth started to kind of freak out when he saw the needle. So much so that he kicked the guy and bent it with his foot. Yeah – OUCH.

So what had to happen? Me and the lady assistant had to literally LAY ACROSS HIM and hold him down so he would be still so they could numb his foot. We stayed there until it was done and he cried the whole time. I felt awful and I think I even cried.

Once the results were in I got nervous. They said that there was a possibility of it being cancer when he got older and that we should have it removed before he turns a teenager. I couldn’t put Seth through that again so soon so we waited. We waited until this week. It had been so long (five years) they wanted to do another biopsy. When I made the appointment we had three weeks until it came due. So that whole time I’m preparing him for what’s going to happen.

Once at the office on Monday we were called back within about five minutes. Seth sat down and took his shoe and his sock off and they ended up moving us to another room to do the biopsy. This time it was just me and the doctor. Seth sat really still until the doctor started towards his foot with the needle. Seth started hollering “No! I’m not ready yet! Please don’t!!” Before you knew it the doctor had his hand on Seth’s foot holding it down and I held down his other leg while Seth latched onto my other arm and squeezed and cried out in pain.

Lord – it was awful! Not nearly as bad as the first time but still bad. I hadn’t thought to lay across him so he couldn’t see until the doctor started to take this tiny exacto knife to his foot. Seth asked what he was doing and I told him that he was just going to look at for a minute and that it would all be over soon. What he didn’t know was that he was cutting away the top layer of skin from the bottom of his foot. (WARNING – it’s gonna get gross.)

I glanced over my shoulder and saw that the doctor was putting a piece of skin into a small vial with some kind of liquid in it and he started to dab at the area with a q-tip then gauze pads. They all came back into my vision soaked in blood. Once the band aid was on Seth’s foot I moved. He asked if that was it and I said yes. He said “Did he take a piece of it out with a needle?” I said “No – he cut it out.” Later I told him it was when I said he was just looking and he gave me a look.

We were to leave the band-aid on for 24 hours so we did and then when I went to change it and clean it the bandage the doctor had used was soaked in blood – and it was still bleeding. It was a big area that he cut – about 1/2″ long and a 1/4″ wide. We have to clean it with hydrogen peroxide and water and then put polybactin (sp?) on it. He can’t be in the water for about a week so he will miss out on the pool trip at summer camp for two weeks.

Yesterday we got a call from the doctor. I was nervous but he said that it came back benign. Yea! So no surgery to remove it in the near future! When I told Seth he was like “Yes!” and went back to playing in his room with his matchbox cars.

In the end it all worked out. Even though there was crying and blood. I hope to never have to do that again. BUT – I will because I have a black spot on my tummy that my mom said I MUST get checked – which I have forgotten to make an appointment about. Woops.

Sorry mom!!




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