Dear 16-year-old me…
Lying out in the sun for an hour your first time out was stupid.
You’re a fair skinned girl and won’t get a golden tan.
What you will end up getting are 3-inch diameter blisters
Everywhere your tiny bikini doesn’t cover;
And you’ll be planting the seeds for future melanomas.

Dear 21-year-old me…
You’re no longer in high school or college
So stop the tanning already.
You’re still getting sunburns and haven’t learned to use sunscreen,
But at lease you’ve started throwing a t-shirt over your face
And your future wrinkles will appreciate that tiny gesture.


Dear 29-year-old me…
You’re almost a mom and you still haven’t learned.
According to your OB, your baby is getting plenty of Vitamin D
And you have the tannest pregnant belly he’s ever seen.
Those sun rays are not only aging the look of your skin,
But you’re doing irreparable damage to your skin cells.


Dear 40-year-old me…
Finally you’re listening!
As a busy mom to two athletic sons
You no longer have time to lounge around in the sun;
But now you’ve taken up marathoning and spend hours
Running in the sun on long training runs.
Be sure to apply plenty of sun screen and reapply often.


Dear 53 and 59-year-old me…
I told you so!
You’ve been diagnosed with two melanomas,
But luckily both were removed at their very earliest stages.
You most likely could have prevented these
If you’d listened to your older and wiser self when you were young.


Dear future me…
Be smarter,
Apply sunscreen,
Don’t tan,
And avoid the sun in the middle of the day.
Be vigilant!
Continue to get your skin checked regularly
And NEVER hesitate to have an odd looking place on your skin
Checked out between dermatologist appointments.
Early detection is the key!




May is Melanoma Awareness Month and throughout the month I’ll be posting various articles, stories, pictures, and links that relate to skin cancer prevention and early detection. To read other articles I’ve written over the last few years, click on my Skin Cancer tab.


  • Questions:
  • Did you get any bad burns as a child?
  • Do you check your skin regularly?
  • Has your life been touched by melanoma?