Friday, June 30, 2017

A Baseball on my Forehead


On Wednesday morning Dave and I were sitting in the living room -- me reading my Tennessee Williams biography, Dave watching something on his computer. I kept hearing a man shouting out in the street. I couldn't tell what he was saying, and then our doorbell rang. Dave answered it, and it was the shouter, asking in his heavy East London accent whether we had any knives we needed sharpened.

Good Lord, I thought. Does this still happen? Itinerant knife sharpeners wandering the streets of London? It seems so "Mary Poppins."

Dave told him that no, we had nothing that needed sharpening. Which is mostly true. I hadn't thought about it, honestly. I'm sure we will now find dozens of implements that could stand to have a sharper edge.

Dave and I have spent the last two days in and out of the Royal Free Hospital -- him for a follow-up appointment for his Crohn's, and me to have the rest of that spot on my forehead removed. Dave's medical news is looking up. He was given some medicine that he said has already made a tremendous difference in how he feels.

I suppose things are looking up for me too, but right now my forehead just hurts. At least the surgery is over. The biopsy a month ago seemed to remove the lesion entirely, but the doctors felt -- despite the fact that the subsequent diagnosis of squamous cell carcinoma was apparently somewhat tentative and uncertain -- that more skin should be excised. (About a centimeter around, more or less.) I was awake for the entire procedure, but after local anesthetic I only felt a sort of pressure, a pushing and pulling, and I saw no sign of blood. I was then sent away with a baseball-sized bandage on my forehead and directions to take paracetamol for pain and to have my nine stitches out in a week.

I will have a scar, the doctor said. She said she made it a curved line, rather than a straight one, because curved lines "are more aesthetically pleasing." We'll see.

I'm not a vain person and I'm not too worried about it, but I hope it's not a super-obvious scar. The skin feels a bit tighter. As I told the doctor, I'm just going to think of it as a facelift. "Some people pay millions for this!" I said.

Dave and I joked that Olga might mistake my bandage for a ball and rip it off my head. Instead she doesn't seem to see it at all.

(Photo: A cafe on Edgware Road, on Tuesday.)

10 comments:

Yorkshire Pudding said...

"Oh, the scar? Yeah. It was when I was in Morocco years ago. In an alley off the souk I saw two men attacking an old woman. She was screaming for her life. I waded in with my fists and drove the pair of them off. They both had knives and one of them managed to stab me on the head just as I flattened his nose into his face... Yeah. It's true. I got a bravery award but I try not to talk about that."

Shooting Parrots said...

I fear YP's suggestion might be a little hard to swallow. If you're asked about the scar, a simple "Heidelberg" should suffice to explain it.

Ms. Moon said...

So they're not even sure it was a squamous cell? How odd. Well, a scar will be interesting.
I'm so glad to hear that Dave's new medication is truly helping.

ellen abbott said...

9 stitches! I only got 3. glad to hear Dave is feeling better. would that it was the disease going away but management is better than nothing. I wish someone would come to my door offering to sharpen my knives.

Linda Sue said...

Sorry you had surgery, I suppose I will be facing similar surgeries down the line...intense sunshine growing up, my brother had most of his nose removed- they offered plastic surgery but, like you, he was not vain about it, and it still worked as a nose ought, he just left it. Dave , also , has been on my mind, wishing him well from afar. I am probably not alone in thinking that scars are interesting and cool looking. They tell better stories than tattoos. Glad all is well enough, and that Olga did not run off with your face.

e said...

Glad to know you've both been taken care of and things are looking up. Scars aren't bad, I have had several since childhood surgeries and acquired more since. I think Linda Sue is right about them.

Sharon Anck said...

I love YP's "scar" story! Nine stitches seems like a lot. I'm sure I had no more than 4. You are probably glad that's over with. I agree about he knife sharpening guy. That seems very 50's.

The Bug said...

Oh man, my teeth are on edge just thinking about the knife guy. I canNOT abide the sound of a knife being sharpened. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee (that's me, running away in hysteria - ha!).

I'm glad you guys are doing well in the health department - and I really hope these new meds help Dave a lot.

jenny_o said...

Well, it wasn't fun but at least it's done (your surgery). Now you just need to make up a believable story about how you got the scar! (Don't use YP's, for Pete's sake!) Glad to hear Dave is noticing an improvement with new medication. I hope this means he can go more and do more and just begin to enjoy it all again, with you.

The comments were quite hilarious today!

Jennifer said...

I knew what you were talking about the instant I read your post title! Those pressure bandages are huge!

If it makes you feel better, Gregg's scar isn't noticeable at all. He made the same facelift joke, too. Lol.