Friday, January 27, 2012

Having some work done

At our mutual birthday outing, Karen asked, "After 48 years, you just got tired of looking at it?"

That's it, exactly.
I got tired of looking at it. 

I should have asked her in the first place.  Because I didn't get to "I'm just tired of looking at it," without several months of soul-searching over whether this was a vanity.  I was going to write about that, but I know the Readership is much more entertained by my expeditions into the world of American medicine.

Ten minutes every year, my Dr asks what's on my mind and I never have anything interesting for her to do, so I said, "I'm thinking of having my mole removed."

She shrugs, hands in lab coat pockets,  and says"Sure.  why not."  Healthcare reform, indeed.

You can convince yourself that a skin growth on your face is barely noticeable  and it's just one of your features, and why go through the hassle (and is it Vanity??!!) -- but let me tell you, when you refer to it as "my mole," and everyone knows what you're talking about, even by phone, then you are on the right track.

Except at the dermatologist's, of course.  They say, "which one?"   

Or, as Jay once said, "You finally changed your glasses, thank God."

Here is the list of things you thought I would worry about.

What if it changes the whole look of your face?
Karen and I share a shuddering fascination for true mirrors, which do not reverse your image, but instead show you exactly as the world sees you.  Whenever I see a photo of myself, I think the mole is in the wrong place.  And it is all I can see.

What if you lose your super powers?
Only Greatest of All Sisters would know I really did consider this -- I knew a woman who lost her music scholarship after an accident ruined her embouchure.  Probably my facination with that sentence is greater than any true belief that my encyclopedic knowledge of TV trivia or uncanny sense of time are actually related to this undeveloped twin.

By the way, did you know Barbara Gordon is now in a wheelchair? 

But that's your Marilyn Monroe beauty mark..
You're sweet.  But 1.  hers might not have been real.

and 2. If you're going to have Lauren Hutton's gap, you'd better be Lauren Hutton.

What if you catch on fire?
Yes, of course this was my own question.  (Whoever let me work in healthcare....)
After our initial meeting, though, where I learned we were doing this with a scapel and not a laser, with novocain and not gas,  and...that I was out of my mind, I was fine.

What if it leaves a worse scar?
Well, this had kept me from it for years.  I thought, if I'm going for an eye-catching facial disfigurement, we can mark that already complete.

How do you bandage a lip?
We're using a sling instead.

Was it getting bigger?
No.  My face is getting smaller .  You think LBG was born with those earlobes?

Will it be biopsied?
Yes - how else would insurance cover it?

Did you watch?
I kept my eyes shut through the whole thing, which was only 10 minutes, so that wasn't hard.

Do you have body dysmorphic disorder?
No, but I may have decided to do it just because it didn't have to be orchestrated, discussed with anyone, or dependent on committee. 
And that's its own kind of disorder.

But is it a vanity?
It is.  But I have  room for the occasional human weakness.  


  1. The new glasses were a really good idea! Now, this, hmmmm....well, it will prove to be different but I think you look great with or without "the mole". I don't think you will have a Jennifer Gray syndrome at all...

  2. Since I don't even know the lately departed, I feel comfortable saying it was not vanity - in the same way that getting a peel was not vanity. Right?

    It's taking control of ourselves.

  3. Personally I do not think it is vanity. While it never looked like a melanoma, I have become somewhat obsessed with moles and yearly "body mapping" done by my dermatologist as preventative medicine. I look at your procedure also as preventative and nothing more or less. M.


Comments Build Community! We thank you for yours. Spam comments are not welcome and will not be posted.