The erosion phase…

This place at this time of year. There was something about it. I remember it like it was yesterday. It was a rite of passage. Spring skiing in The Canadian Rockies. We looked forward to these every-other-weekend trips all winter. These trips served as fodder for our dream. It could happen. Jim and I had it all planned out. Buy a used van. Ski every mountain in western Canada. Head south into Montana, Idaho and Colorado to keep skiing. Ski until the snow melted. Then drive to Miami, sell the van and head for the Cayman Islands. We never took the trip. Now we are just a couple of fifty year olds with bad knees. We still meet up and ski to this day. He is an incredible friend and truth be told a better skier than me. The sun is spectacular and powerful at high altitudes. But There was a tube. A small yellowy-orange tube. This elusive tube was only available at ski hills. It was called “Snik”. We needed it for one reason. The guarantee on the label. It guaranteed to leave you “honey bronzed and very very desirable”. Almost 9000 feet above sea level surrounded by snow and not a beach in sight. Yet we still wanted a tan. Idiots. 
Day 27. This is it. No more chemo. I have reached what is called “the erosion phase”. Not a great name. It needs tweaking. I am not a true wordsmith. To that end this might need to be reworked in a boardroom somewhere. Instead of the “erosion phase” perhaps call it “the intense pain-cracked bleeding skin-holy $%#!-nothing helps-how many painkillers can I take in one day” phase. I know. It is a work in progress. It needs a tweak or two. The erosion. A result of a chemo build up on the skin the past 27 days. It results in a rapid shed of all affected cancerous/precancerous areas that have been treated. A massive dry, peeking cracking scab. Not to be a negative nelly but this sucks. That’s it. The height of my negativity. I got this. The next five days will be rather unpleasant but the end is near. I have said it many times. There are so many people so much worse off than me. Keep ’em in your prayers. 
We should all meet somewhere. I am working with my friends at Coolibar.com to host a free public skin cancer and information day later this spring. That would be a great place to meet. More on that in a later post. I would have you all over to the house but my wife would have a cow. 
Day 27. Erosion phase day 1 pics below. Thanks for stopping by. 
Gob bless,
-Ian 

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Author: ianmn

FOX 9 Chief Meteorologist Ian Leonard...love my life, love my wife, love my daughters and love my dog...kinda like the cat. I am the #stayskyaware dude.

36 thoughts on “The erosion phase…”

    1. You can do it my friend…. myself and your friends from speical olympics are praying for you and are thinking of you my good friend… Corey.

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  1. Praying for much better days ahead. Cancer is horrible for everyone involved, I know as I watched my son go through chemo. Thank you for sharing your journey with us.

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  2. How incredibly painful. I have read every blog some with tears in my eyes. Thank you for sharing, I pray that it may help others who are going though this same painful process.
    I will smile when I next c u on my favorite news/weather program.

    Get Outlook for Android

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  3. You did it, all the way to the end of that awful tube you did it. Erosion phase or not I’ve been reading every day and rooting for you and I am so happy for you that you reach this day and that you did it and God bless you for it. you’re pretty much a rockstar and many people’s eyes I hope you realize that.

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  4. Dear Ian, I wish I had some magic words to help you through this painful journey. I, too, am a skin cancer survivor. Growing up on a farm in eastern MN, I sure wish I would have listened to my Mom to wear sunscreen when helping with field work. If we could only go back in time! Please know I “check” on you every day and pray for strength and courage. During my next BLU light treatment I will be reminded of your determination. If Ian can do it, I can do it! I hope you know you are an inspiration to all and teaching the importance of sunscreen and sun protection to everyone. Gentle hugs heading your way, Ruthie

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  5. Well, erosion does not sound pleasant, hope that phase won’t last long. Congratulations on draining the tube! We are all pulling for you and praying for you, your wife and the girls as we eagerly await your return before the green screen. Your blog has made a positive impact.

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  6. Dear Ian,
    Thank you Thank you Thank you for being so brave as to share publicly such a personal journey and being so blatantly honest. Cancer is cruel. It has struck my family and the families of many that I know. Not something we can or should take lightly. I pray you have quick and successful recovery. You have and will continue to touch the hearts of many people and sharing your story will continue to educate many many more. All the best to you and yours.

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  7. Yay….end of the bad stuff…thanks for sharing with pictures…we all need our eyes opened up…God bless you…keep positive and posting…Judy

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  8. Hi Ian – congrats on ending that part of the journey. And with humor still intact. You are awesome! And you will get thru the “erosion” phase – and be back telling jokes on the tellie in no time. Prayers and blessings.

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  9. You got this! Look how far you’ve come! You are kicking some serious cancer a$$! Congratulations on getting here and let the healing BEGIN!
    Prayers as always!
    Lynn

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  10. I just found your blog tonight, when my boyfriend made a comment that he hadn’t seen you on the news. And I usually don’t watch television at all, unless I’m at his house and my own disabilities (which also makes me a medical and mental health activist, usually keep me home a lot).

    Thank you for sharing this journey of yours with people. Thank you for being honest but still having a sense of humor about something so unfunny that also helps bring awareness to those who might be at risk of having skin cancer and the support that’s needing that while you’ve been getting, you’ve also been giving in abundance.

    You, your family and friends and the people who’ve talked about this battle who are fighting it, are all in my thoughts and prayers as you recover from this.

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  11. Ian, I’ve been following your blog since the beginning. You have been so brave and with such a sense of humor. Thank you sharing your journey with us. I appreciate your statement that there are others out there that are worse off. This is something we all need to be reminded of. I am one of the blessed ones. (I don’t believe in luck) I don’t have cancer. But you have opened my eyes with your suffering and your willingness to share it with us. I’m telling everyone about the dangers of skin cancer and how they must use sunscreen. Please know that I have been praying for you. May God bless you and your family.

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  12. Ian… I have been reading your posts since day 1. I have watched you do the weather for years now… In fact the only 1 I care to watch. All I can say is Thank you for sharing this difficult time with the rest of us. You are in my prayers and thoughts daily. You have done a great job of describing what you are going through but I do have a question… I have noticed that some areas appear to be much more red and inflamed than others. Is that because there isn’t skin cancer (or less) in those areas or is it just an optical illusion? Thank you again for sharing this private part of your life. I am sure you have helped many who are going through the same thing. Your on the down side now. My father always told me count to 10 whenever things felt out of my control. 1 -9 inhale and very fast. And Ten being said on an exhale and very slow. It has gotten me through some very tough times and always worked for me to this day.

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  13. I think I found the erosion phase to be worse than the actual burning. The difference could be that mine was from radiation. The skin on your face sure looks similar to what I had. 6 weeks out and it didn’t even show anymore. The discomfort as they so kindly call it, goes away much sooner. I think it was a week before I felt better. And yes, cheeseburgers are the best! See, you got this!

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  14. You got this Ian! So glad that you have finally made it through the tube. Although the “erosion” phase sounds no better than the rest, it is one step closer to the finish line. Thank you for sharing your journey and your pictures. Looking forward to seeing you on Fox 9 again in the future!

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  15. Hi cousin. I was reading an account of a boatload of shipwrecked sailors who spent 90 days floating in an open boat with no protection from the sun. The author’s description of the effect on their faces, and skin in general, brought to mind the photos you’ve posted. For some reason, this prompted me to leave this comment.

    I’ve read your posts every day but didn’t know what to say. Still don’t, actually. We share the experience of losing loved ones but I know I am ill equipped to relate to the real possibility of having to leave your loved ones behind. I’m full of hope that you’ll soon be successfully past this and life can return to normal, for you and your family.

    -Sean

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  16. Ian ~ your journey is coming to an end, and quite a journey it has been. I have read all your blogs and have prayed that you stay strong, heal, and get the cancer-free news after this is all done.

    It is wonderful that you have shared your experience with your original diagnosis, surgeries, this round of chemo and the photos. I admire your strength and humor with dealing with all of this. You are an inspiration to those going through the same thing, or worse, and I want to thank you for that. My health problems seem so small when I think of what you have endured, as well as those who have posted about similar journeys.

    The Coolibar idea of skin cancer awareness is a wonderful idea and I for one will do all I can to be there to learn more about how to protect myself, their clothing (I do own some, but they have so many new items now), and of course for the chance to meet you for the second time.

    God bless you, Ian.
    Michelle

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