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The worst day of Ephman's life came when his wife got diagnosed with a stage 3 Melanoma tumour. Yuck! But here's the rub, and why this page exisits on the blog. She's run 5 marathons. Her last New York City Marathon was 3:46:07 (she'd be mad if that 7 second was not listed). Anyways Ephman's giving up the mic and letting her tell her own story. And when you're done reading her story you can click on this link and scroll down to the bottom of the page. So read it below and feel good.
My brother got me into running, he also encouraged me to run a marathon (little did we both know that I'd be hooked). That occured almost five years ago when I signed up to run my first New York Marathon. Alot has happened since I made that commitment, other than the long training runs and stress I'd actually be able to complete the race my boyfriend and I decided to get married (it was now September/October and I wanted to get married the day we met, and since he didn't want to wait until the following year we made a quick decision to do it November 13th, the week after the marathon). No big stress as it was going to be a very small wedding of just immediate family (thanks to Beverly for doing the planning). By this time I was so focused on the marathon that the wedding wasn't even on my mind.
That's when the visit to the Dermatologist occured (this was sometime in the beginning of October) I had a freckle on my face that was turning into a little bump. All was ok until she called me with the results. It was Melanoma and I was to call the surgeon to see what to do. The following week I met him, he looked at me, the biopsy results and felt my lymph nodes and said I'll schedule the surgery for next week. Boy, did the reality begin to sink in, but what about the marathon and the wedding? I had been training so hard and didn't want to get married with a scar on my face. The Doctor thought emotional well-being is important as well and that I could wait two weeks and have the surgery after the marathon and the wedding. The next three weeks were crazy between pre-admin tests, wedding stuff (whoops... I almost forget I had to get a dress) and the final training for the marathon. The only way for me to handle this was to focus on one thing at a time.
First the marathon (i did it ...yippee) then was that was done next was the wedding, all went well and it was a beautiful wedding, next was the surgery. All went okay (other than the minor freakouts prior to putting me under...but that's to be expected from me). All was going well until the follow up with the surgeon he told me one of the lymph nodes he took had a trace amount of melanoma on it. Now I had to see an oncologist as well.
As we know there's no clear treatment for melanoma, and there was no definitive way to determine whether that lymph node was the only one with melanoma on it options were layed out for me. I chose just monitoring. I have been monitored now for almost five years by the dermatologist, surgeon and oncologist (with some minor scares with lymph nodes biopsies and the bi-annually and now annually yucky pet scan) November has become a very important month for me. Not only is it the NYC Marathon (which i have now done for the past five years) as well as my wedding anniversary but it's also the anniversary of my melanoma surgery. This year being the five year mark I decided (if all goes according to plan) to again run the NYC Marathon this years run will also be symbolic because hopefully I will be five years melanoma free. What better way to celebrate than to run (which I love to do) for a cause that's very important to me.
Please help make a difference (and remember to always wear suncreen in the sun). Oh and it will be my 5 year wedding anniversary (sorry Ephraim).
Thanks for your support,