Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

January 2, 2008



Need to change out the Christmas mat on the front porch (not to mention take down the interior decorations). A bit distracted with some deadlines + a general malaise this past week.

This afternoon I headed back to the dermatologist for some additional work on my moles. Two of the three that were taken out last time came back atypical (one moderate + one severe) and needed additional margins removed around the initial spot. While we were there (Chris came along to have some of his questions answered and see the process) she decided to remove three more on my back as well.

According to the American Cancer Society, “Although most moles never turn into a melanoma, some do. Researchers have found some DNA changes that transform benign nevus (mole) cells into melanoma cells. But it is still not known exactly why some moles become cancerous or why having many moles or atypical (dysplastic) moles increases your risk of developing melanoma.

Basically I am all about having them removed if they look the least bit suspicious. Especially after having one come back as melanoma in-situ (on the surface of my skin) in August. A back full of scars sounds pretty good to me.

Another thing that sounds good to me? Living for today and not worrying about what comes next.

Another gentle reminder: make an appointment to get your own skin checked.

Completely enjoying reading all your words for 2008. I will compile one big list and post it here next week.


  • 1.
    Amy Zarrella said…

    Thanks for the reminder Ali. My GP told me to get an appointment for a skin check in September and I have been putting it off. I am calling tomorrow. And I think a back full of scars if pretty much worth it too. All my love and prayers to you and Simon and Chris.

  • 2.
    Shannon said…

    Thinking of you. Thanks for sharing.

  • 3.
    melissa w said…

    Best wishes. I purchased your latest book over the weekend. It is awesome. Thanks so much!!
    PS what is your dog’s name?

  • 4.
    karen said…

    ali–what takes place when they are removed? does it hurt?

  • 5.
    Karen said…

    I’m off to the dermatologist on Monday for the same problem–my first experience with a mole that has noticeably changed. I got right on the phone! Must admit it’s a bit nerve-racking.
    On a brighter note, my word for this year is COMMIT. Of the goals I set each year, the same 2 or 3 never seem to really get met–it gets better but not where I want it to be, so I am committing to put them first. Last year’s word really did help me focus on relaxing, and I saw a noticeable improvement. Thanks, as always, for all your inspiration.

  • 6.
    Judy B said…

    I love your new book so much that I found your first two and got them as well. For the last month or so, I’ve been reading a few pages of one or the other before I go to sleep, hoping that your creativity and ideas will inspire me to great works in the morning. LOL
    Seriously, I love your work, your ideas, your zest for life, your child and you. Happy New Year.

  • 7.
    Sara said…

    Glad you are taking care of yourself and having your skin checked. I need to do that as well soon. I had it done a few years back and had a couple moles removed… they came back ok though. Thanks for bringing more awareness to this. And happy new year!

  • 8.
    Maureen F. said…

    Thank you for sharing this personal bit – It really brings attention to the issue, I am with you, get rid of them, they are not welcomed !!! love your picture with your doggie !! sweet

  • 9.
    Lisa said…

    I hope your moles all work out ok. Definitely something to add to the health check list.
    As for my word this year, I think it will be DEEPER. Last year was a very revealing year for me…I feel like I hit a new stage of life and in that started learning how to live my life more according to who *I* am instead of who I think everyone wants me to be. This year, I want to go deeper, exploring better some of the things I learned about myself last year.

  • 10.
    Conchi said…

    Don´t worry. Only live the present and enjoy today. But you must go to the doctor and be careful of you. Sorry for my english. I only want you know I think of you. Kisses

  • 11.
    giosmama26 said…

    Aww Ali, thanks for sharing something so personal and for keeping us posted. I think of you often in regards to this situation. Thanks for bringing the awareness to this subject. It couldn’t have come from a more respectable person. My thoughts and prayers are with you!!

  • 12.
    Shelley said…

    girl – this hit home today. i have several medical problems and the whole skin/mole issue is one i have NEVER taken care of. being from a family of molely people who never go theirs examined.. i just *assume* they are ok. but since being PG and my body riding the hormonal post pregnancy roller coaster almost 3 years later – they change. and new ones appear. overnight it seems. and the *age spots* appear now too… and the skin tags.. and there’s this little spot on the tip of my nose that is always a *dry patch* but gets really dark and sun-burny in the summertime… i just think i show up at the dr with ONE more complaint – and he’s going to have me committed. i swear i think HE thinks i make stuff up! i think this post was the icing on the cake. i need a new GP.
    thanks again for makin me think, girl. cheers to you and hope all is well.. and yes – as others mentioned.. does it hurt? i’ve got some moles about the size of two pencil erasers… ick!

  • 13.
    christen said…

    good luck with the mole removals :)
    i got your book for my birthday and am loving it!! i need to take my christmas decorations too – but we’re just not ready yet. i’m waiting until saturday.

  • 14.
    Jane Young said…

    Thanks for sharing! I got checked after your discussion about it in August. Suprisingly, I didn’t have any suspicious ones. I always worried about skin cancer because I spent a lot of time at the pool as a child. I also got your book recently and I loved it. I liked it best of the 3 I think. I liked the others also but I liked that this one was all your layouts and I enjoyed the challenges.

  • 15.
    maryjo materazo said…

    good girl for taking care of this ali! i had a couple removed last year & luck they were nothing but ugly moles. mine are hereditary but u never know. hope it all goes uneventfully on your end. as far as my word this year, i picked {order}. i want to become more orderly, maintaining order in my life & home.

  • 16.
    Jac said…

    Hey Ali, I’m sure all will be well.
    Keeping you in my prayers…

  • 17.
    Brianna said…

    Hope everything goes smoothly. My word for 2008 is love.:)

  • 18.
    Danielle said…

    Thank you for sharing such a personal part of your life and thank you for the reminder to take care of ourselves and to LIVE FOR TODAY! You rock!

  • 19.
    Kathy said…

    Hi Ali,
    Just had the mole experience today after going in for my annual derm check (previous basel cell already). This time I got the “punch” treatment on my thigh. Not painful, 3 stitches. I’m hoping she doesn’t need to take more, but would prefer it out too. Best of luck to you. Oh and my word is “Simplify” but by that I mean to focus more on the important things and get rid of the clutter!

  • 20.
    Mish Gasser said…

    Thanks so much for the PSA about skin care Ali. I think it’s a good reminder for all of us.
    BTW, my word for 2008 is “resilience”. No matter what happens, it’s possible to bounce back from it.

  • 21.
    Beth said…

    Ali ~ best wishes, thoughts and prayers are with you. I have been reading your blog for a long time, but have never posted. I just thought you might need a bit of encouragement today. DH went through something similar this summer, so I can somewhat relate. I’m always telling him it’s better to err on the side of life…
    Anyway, you are a total inspiration to me as a scrapbooker, wife, mother, and a strong woman. As my word this year, I chose DETERMINATION. It fits every aspect of my life, and will encourage me to get so much done and be a much better person.
    Thank you for inspiring me!

  • 22.

    I am so glad you are taking care of this. I was diagnosed with melanoma in October and had a 2×8 inch section taken off the side of my face. I gladly accepted the scar in return for my life. I am a single mom of 3(one with Autism) and I have children to raise. My melanoma was thin and 95% survival with excision! I had put off having it looked at and now I am a big advocate of people getting checked regularly. My children now are more at risk since I have been diagnosed. I have had to make some life changes but my life is worth it! My word is going to be LIVE! I am going to “live” each day to the fullest and make sure to do things I have always wanted to do and not put things off. I am going to “LIVE”! Shelley

  • 23.
    Nita said…

    You and your family are in my thoughts & prayers! Regarding your moles…well, I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed! I work for a GP, and I might add, all melanomas or skin cancers for that fact look like moles! And I can vouch for that! I had a pearlescent patch on my cheek, which had been there for many years. I had it evaluated by two of the GP’s I work for; they said it was nothing. I had it through my first pregnancy, and 18 months after I had my daughter, I went to a dermatologist for an evaluation of dry skin…on my feet. The derm dr. took one look at the lesion on my face, which I had not even mentioned to him, and he told me that he wanted to biopsy it that day. Well, turns out, I had had a basal cell carcinoma – I suppose it’s the “best” skin cancer to have! It was removed, and to this day, I haven’t had any more. But I mention this, as I have also seen many melanomas, and one was a pearlescent lesion.
    Onto another subject, I took your “everyday life” class at CKU in Orlando back in October! I loved it! You truly are amazing!

  • 24.
    Kim B. said…

    I totally agree with you on the moles. I took my 17 year old daughter this morning for a “mole check”. She had some “questionable” looking ones on her chest. GOOD NEWS. They were fine but she has opted to have them removed. 15 year old son is next for his “mole check”. We get our teeth cleaned, our yearly paps and mammograms. Add this to your list of things to do. It just takes a few minutes.

  • 25.
    Vanessa said…

    Hi Ali,
    You are in my prayers and I am sure that all is going to be just fine. I want to THANK YOU for reminding me to get checked. I had a biopsy done over a week ago on one of my moles because the dermatologist said it looked a bit irregular. I’ll know how it all came out soon, but everyone does need to get checked. It’s so much better to be safe than sorry.
    As for my 2008 word, I picked ENERGY. Energy can be defined as 1 a: dynamic quality b: the capacity of acting or being active c: a usually positive spiritual force. I hope to have more energy and be able to energize those around me. I want to be stronger and more active, enjoy my life more, be free of so many worries, and focus on what’s important and that includes starting a family one day soon. Here’s to more physical and spiritual energy in 2008!

  • 26.
    leslie said…

    ali. oh, i hope everything works out okay for you. better than okay! thanks for the reminder. my mother is going through the same thing as you. a very real reminder for me as well. also … the words. i have kidnapped your idea. for my own blog. love this whole concept. leslie.

  • 27.
    Laura said…

    Keeping you & your guys in my prayers. My husband has several moles that he is convinced “are fine.” I want proof. I’ll be on him about going to the Dr. even more now!
    Big hugs!!

  • 28.
    margaret said…

    Ali, good for you for sharing your experiences at the dermatologist’s office. (I thought the self-portrait was interesting, as well!) After my youth seeking the incredible tan, at 40 I went through radiation therapy to keep my eyelid after a basal cell was removed. I can’t encouraged people enough. DON’T just live for today; take care of yourself today for tomorrow.
    On a happier note, I have chosen LIFE as my word for 2008. MY life, WILD life (lots of birds and critters here in Florida), ETERNAL life. Treasure LIFE.

  • 29.
    Lisa said…

    Ali, Glad to hear you are taking care of yourself. I do hope that all will be well. I had gone to the Dermatologist once and she like freaked out and insisted that I had a certain mole removed right away. It really scared me!! Turns out it was fine.
    Just wanted you to know I’m thinking of you.

  • 30.
    alexandra said…

    Hi Ali,
    I am about to embark on the whole mole inspection process. Not looking forward to it (I have a few weird ones) but your prompting is making me feel more proactive about it. My dermatologist is not shy with what he removes but I’m thinking the way you are – a back full of scars is not such a bad thing.
    Sorry you are having to go through all of this but happy that you are handling it and getting proper treatment.
    Best wishes and healthy, healing vibes coming across the miles to you.
    P.S. So nice that Chris went with you – he rocks!

  • 31.
    ms ellie said…

    Thanks for the “365″ photo suggestion. I have successfully completed Day 2!
    Hoping I can carry it through.
    Photographed my husband at the airport today leaving for a trip. Just an everyday event documented for the project!
    Thanks also for the skin care advice. Us moms need to take better care of ourselves!

  • 32.
    AOlsen said…

    Hi Ali,
    There was a show recently on Oprah with Dr. Oz that talked about moles and melanoma and to get these checked out. I have many moles on my body several on my back. A few seem a bit suspicious. Your post a few weeks ago was a sign to me to make that call and have them checked out. I contacted my doctor to look into it. Tomorrow I’ll call to make the appointment. Thanks for the reminder!

  • 33.
    Debbie L. said…

    I’m sorry you are going through this. My prayers are with you and your family!

  • 34.
    Karla said…

    Wow Ali…thanks so much for sharing with all of us. We have been touched with cancer in our family recently and it’s nice to get support. You and your family are in my prayers,

  • 35.
    Joyce said…

    Hope all is ok with your moles.
    My word for the year is Journey. This is the first time in 10 years all my kids will be at school-eek! So its a journey back to me!

  • 36.
    busyizzie said…

    great photo your dog looks quite fun. Love the perspective of the photo. Good luck with the dermatologist appointment.
    I’ve also been inspired to try a one little word. I sent my mom the link to last year’s post because I thought it might help her move forward this year since her divorce is almost finalized after 43 years of marriage. She decided to select the word RISK.
    I’ve thought and thought about my word. I finally narrowed it down to BELIEVE.
    Thanks for the continued inspiration.

  • 37.
    Stacy/CA said…

    I just wanted to give you a big cyber hug. I have a “connect-the-scars” back myself, after having my melanoma removed in 2004. I go for my yearly appointment on Friday, and like you, would rather have all the questionable ones removed rather than have them “go bad” later on.
    Wishing you good health in 2008!

  • 38.
    Shannon Dean said…

    Ali, you are in our thoughts.. its all good you’ll be fine and better than ever!
    and my word is CALM time to get over my anxiety!

  • 39.
    Laura Reaux said…

    Ali, I would give you a hug if I could. I’m praying for you and thinking of you. It’s so sweet of you to keep us posted.

  • 40.
    Gillian said…

    Sound advice! Getting things checked out is always a simple way to keep yourself healthy.
    My word for 2008 is ‘harmonize’… I wanted to go with organize (since I need to organize much more than I do now!) but that sounded harsh…. harmonize makes me think about getting everything to just the right level for ME… not too organized, not too sloppy… just perfect.. harmony.

  • 41.
    Susan Hessler said…

    Ok, after a day’s reflection I’ve changed my word to BREATHE. My word was overwhelming me, and I think I need to step back and just take a deep breath for 2008.
    thanks again, Susan

  • 42.
    Janine said…

    Well done, you really can afford to take chances with anything this serious, no matter where in the world you live that sun can be nasty !
    My word for this year is to be HAPPY to love and enjoy the little things and to not get so bogged down in the big things. To take time, to laugh more and to smile.

  • 43.
    Janine said…

    Oh man I am tired sorry I meant to say ….you CANT afford to take chances, sorry I had a baby brain moment LOL…..:)

  • 44.
    Sharon said…

    My Dad had a chunk of his lip cut off when we were kids. He is still around to play with his grandchildren. Skin cancer is nothing to muck around with.

  • 45.
    erin yamabe said…

    i’m keeping you and your family in my prayers. thank you for the gentle reminder. cancer has taken many family members, i know better.

  • 46.
    Paola Norman said…

    Dear Ali, wow, you really are a pillar of inspiration and strength. I love what you say about “living for today” that makes so much sense, yet is not always easy to do..
    I keep you in my thoughts and prayers are amazing just being you!
    Peace to you always.

  • 47.
    hedwig said…

    Dear Ali,
    I hope and pray the best for the mole thing! I have enjoyed your christmas project enormously. Gave me new inspiration to make a yearbook of my family and the things we have been doing in 2007. A warm embrace from a cold Holland, Hedwig

  • 48.
    hedwig said…

    Dear Ali,
    I hope and pray the best for the mole thing! I have enjoyed your christmas project enormously. Gave me new inspiration to make a yearbook of my family and the things we have been doing in 2007. A warm embrace from a cold Holland, Hedwig

  • 49.
    Sue said…

    Oh so agree, Ali. Live for today, for who knows what is around the corner. Feeling a bit blah myself this week and can’t shake a general “low” feeling. And that’s despite my getting a great start on de-cluttering our home (my main resolution for 2008). Need to constantly remind myself to stop worrying about what comes next. Be grateful (my word for this year) for what I have. Thanks once again for being such a great inspiration. (And I’ll be making an appointment to have my many moles checked as soon as possible.)

  • 50.

    Hubbie has a Dr’s appt next week, not related to moles but NOW I will remind him to have them checked… Thanks Ali & by the way, your Christmas mat looks great ( if only we didn’t live in the land of mud & snow LOL!!!!)

Post a comment