Why was I more freaked out over having a biopsy of a blemish on my scalp than I was over my lumpectomy, or my coronary artery bypass?
It had been a few years since I had a “body check” for skin lesions and having found a spot on the back of my leg decided it was time. The doctor told me that what I had was a blemish that often occurs as people age. More lumps and bumps in the natural course of getting old. Harrumph! However, the doctor asked “How long have you had this bluish mark on the top of your head? We might want to biopsy this.” I don’t know, I responded, but I would ask my hair stylist and get back to her.
The conversation with the hairstylist resulted in making an appointment with the dermatologist to have the “bluish blemish” biopsied. And that is when my mind went into overdrive. Would they shave my scalp or put a band aid on my head that I would later have to yank off, taking with it the few hairs I have left on my thinning scalp? And how would I look going to the Women’s Retreat the next day sporting a bald spot or a band aid? Would I be left with a naked spot that would require imported hair to cover up because at my age, nothing seems to come back except my weight?
I thought about the other skin biopsies I had had over the years and how the results had been negative. This could be no different. I don’t need a biopsy, right? But then, I never wear a hat when I am out in the sun because it is either uncomfortable, hot, or blows away in the wind unless I have it anchored like a ship to a dock. Maybe I should have it biopsied. BUT I DON’T WANT TO HAVE IT BIOPSIED!
Could it be that I am so vain that losing a little bit of hair would stop me from doing what was healthy? Could I ignore this, hope it disappeared and do so without worry? And if it really was melanoma – what then?
Was I vain enough to ignore it or wise enough to grab onto my faith and deal with it?
Taking my obsessive worry and fear to the Lord, I realized that I had a choice in this matter and that was why it was difficult. With my lumpectomy and coronary artery bypass I had no such choice. That course of action was definitive and required. This simple procedure was an elective choice – well sort of. It was a decision I needed to make; and one in which wisdom, or the lack thereof, would determine the future of my health.
The day of the biopsy came. I lifted up prayers to God in the car just before going into the office. I made the best decision I could make and then put my trust in God for the outcome. That being said, it didn’t stop me from pouring out all my concerns and sounding like a “Wendy Whiner” or “Vanessa, the Aging and Vain Vamp.” But the nurse and the doctor were patient and kind. Nothing was shaved, nothing was bandaged. A shot to numb my head, a small hole punch to sample the skin, a few stitches and a dab of antibiotic ointment and I was out the door with nothing more than a headache and sticky, disheveled hair!
I am still waiting the results of the biopsy. Regardless of the results, I know that as long as I make my decisions with God in the equation, I can leave the outcome to the Father.
Proverbs 3:5-6 The Voice (VOICE)
5 Place your trust in the Eternal; rely on Him completely;
never depend upon your own ideas and inventions.
6 Give Him the credit for everything you accomplish,
and He will smooth out and straighten the road that lies ahead.