Sunday, January 1, 2017

Melanoma blogging - a look back - and forward ~

A site I hadn't used in a while recently came up in some of my research and included a list of melanoma blogs.  A quick glance showed me that I knew most of the writers, many of whom have passed.  I looked through the rest.  I then perused a few other sites that keep a fairly up-to-date collection of melanoma blogs.  The results of my completely handy, rather than scientific project, found that of 40 melanoma blogs, 13 peeps were gone, and 20 were abandoned without explanation...many some years ago. Only 7 (and these numbers don't include mine) were still active.  From the disease process last documented in some of the blogs, it is likely their writers are no longer with us.  However, as some of the others were clearly Stage 1 or 2 at the time, I am hopeful that they are alive and well and have simply moved on to other things.

It is a crazy little world that I participate in.  Blogging real data about melanoma is time consuming and sometimes difficult work - NOT like digging ditches or surviving terrible diseases and the ravages of their treatments, by any means!!  But still.  I am contacted by lots of folks whose needs I cannot meet, but whose stories will be a part of me forever.  I am frequently harassed by complete whack jobs selling a variety of strange products and services. These are deleted quicker than you can say, "Bob's your uncle!"  Others inform me, with great authority, about what I should and shouldn't include/post on my blog. Some of these I answer, often scathingly (I am sad?/proud? to say!!).  Most join Bob.  Then, there are those I've met through this process who are now dear friends, having given me far more than I have ever shared with them.  Yet, losses over six years take a toll.   Like Judi Dench's character in Mrs. Henderson Presents, "I can't bear the feeling of helplessness.  I always think there is something I can can do.  Sometimes of course, there is nothing."  I don't know how long I will be able to keep this up.  Adding the sewing, cooking and travel sections Sew Chaotically!, Travel Chaotically!, and Chaotic Cookery! - From Someone Else's Table (though I know by the number of views that these posts are not most of my melanoma peep's cup of tea - and that's okay!!!) has helped sustain me by virtue of their prettier, sillier, more laughable and creative aspects.

My family and friends decided long ago that I'm completely nutters...confirmed by many observable facts:  The fact that I continue to work this hard in melanoma land.  Because I am a maniac, running around from one PASSION to another within my routine day.  And passion it is!!!  Books!  Music!  Friends!  Art!  Travel!  Kiddos!  Melanoma!  Food!  Gardening!  That I get unbelievably tickled when folks find my blog via search terms like:  "black silky chicken", "Morris Blazer", "Fredda Branyon", or "periwinkle".  Knowing my jokes are rarely funny, but my routine comments are.  And that's just a start...

I'm not sure how long I can keep doing whatever it is that you call this.  But, I promise, I will not disappear without a trace.  I - or someone - will let you know where I've gone...when I 'm done.

But for now, I will continue to try to be a friend....this friend....

I believe that together, we can find what we need.  Happy New Year.  - with love, les


  1. Friend? Oh yes! You have found hope, smiles and courage for many, with your blog and beyond.

  2. Celeste, You have been a lifeline to so many and I hope you know how grateful everyone is to have you. Thank you for your continued kindness in sharing your knowledge.

  3. Hey Celeste,

    I found your blog when I was surprise diagnosed Stage IIIB late June 2016. I am in the middle of a graduate direct entry Nurse practitioner program and reading your blog was very helpful for me. I have been writing a blog about my experience and sharing any knowledge that I have. It's been great to have your blog as a reference! thanks so much for taking the time to write it all down.

    here's mine if you haven't seen it: or you can read the breif version of my story here:

  4. Thanks guys! It takes a village!!

  5. Thanks for all you do! I'm glad we are both here. Happy, healthy new year to you!

  6. So happy to have found you!!!!

  7. Your work is valuable to me as a member of the advanced melanoma community. Thanks for your passionate service.