annarosenblumpalmer.com
My thing has a thing. - Anna Rosenblum Palmer
For three years I have been growing something on my back. Generally growing has sort of positive associations, like gardens, and audience, and account balance. When it changes from growth to growths, though, it becomes quite less appealing. It started out like a little bump, and its position just in from my shoulder blade makes it difficult for me to see so I ignored it, even though once or twice it caught on my sweater. That first summer we were having a picnic on the beach with great local food, including blueberries. I was lying on my stomach, thinking how rarely I ever enjoy the sunshine, but this particular day had the right amount of breeze and I was properly screened so I was digging my toes in the sand and really quite relaxed. The kids were old enough to not IMMEDIATELY drown, and we were there with another family so there were three adult eyes. Well six really. Six adult eyes on the kids and I could just check out. So after just a minute or so there was a sand spray and the kid who I had not birthed reached out and said ‘Hey Anna, you have a blueberry on your back.” At first I was confused, then as I started to explain that it was attached to me he began to try to pick it off. That didn’t go well for anyone. He shrieked. I stifled my shriek. I spent the next 15 minutes covering up and waiting on hold with the dermatologists office. When I went in for the appointment they were treating me with the seriousness reserved for people who have had bits of themselves cut out and analyzed. We had what seemed to me like an absurd 5 minute conversation about the location of my last surgery and the location of this new growth while I sat on the exam table fully clothed. I went from feeling 100% certain that this growth had nothing at all to do with what they had removed, to like, 98% certain and it was as if they were trying to get me to submit. OK, OK I am going to be an interesting case. I kept asking why they didn’t just look, because I still have a scar the size of a wooly caterpillar from the last go round, but they seemed to want to “more talk about it” as my 18 month old Leo would say. When I was finally begowned and ungowned they were disappointed. Not only was this new growth NOT on the location of the last questionable area (which they could see because of the clear scar from the last surgery) but this growth is, like, TOTALLY benign. So my blueberry and I left the office. The following summer it was no longer a blueberry, but truly more like a grape and it was freaking Steve out. He kept saying: “don’t you want to cut that thing off?” and I kept saying, its sort ...