From Sun to Beyond, Ryan and I can Disagree
There’s something uplifting about a doctor telling you your skin’s still youthful as he’s checking you out for skin cancer. You gotta think that of all the people that would deal you the brutal truth it would someone at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. But instead of shaking his head at my teen years of stupidity, and telling me I’ve aged like Robert Redford, he actually sounded impressed. The way he said it gave me the warm fuzzies. I thought about asking him to guess my age had he not seen my chart (and compared to other women he has seen) but I didn’t want to push my luck. Besides, I wasn’t here for vanity. I was here for sanity.
Despite the scariness, I take advantage of Huntsman’s once a year free skin cancer checks. My family has a history of melanoma. So far so good for me, but I can’t ignore the damage I did before I was even 20. Basking at Malibu with nothing for protection but a string bikini; the only concern in the sun was when the bottle of baby oil got low. One time, I fell asleep and sunburt my eyelids shut! My whole front was so bad, my dad dunked me in a cold bath of white vinegar to neutralize the burn. I stank for a month and to this day, the smell of vinegar turns my stomach. You got it, can’t stand Caesar salad.
I don’t remember my mom ever discussing SPF or sunscreen with me. In fact, I seem to recall she was the one who bought my baby oil. If only I knew then….. On me, tanning is a waste of time anyway. I could nurture a golden brown all summer but the minute I stepped out of the sun, it would begin to fade. By Back to School, it was gone. Kids these days are lucky. They have ‘Fake Bake’ and Mist on Tans. I tried both during the Sundance Film Fest at Conair’s gifting lounge. I swear I got home and Ryan accused me of cheating on him. I had a sweet dark tan and a beautiful new hairdo from a celebrity stylist that was working the Conair room. The tan lasted about two weeks (the hair, eight. Thanks, Marcus!). Given my financial status I don’t see me going to a salon on a regular basis to look brown instead of white but the tube of Sunless and Skinny (by Fake Bake) does the trick in a pinch.
No way am I letting Sage outdoors without sunscreen. It’s so cute right now because she actually asks for it before we get out of the car. She even likes to put it on herself. Ryan is the problem. At 29, he continues to worship the sun. I can speak out my a*^ and he will still skip the sunscreen, use ‘tan’ and ‘healthy’ in the same sentence and get on my case for being “white”. No amount of statistics, reports or real life stories will smarten him up. Yes, my boyfriend is an idiot on certain levels. I can only hope he keeps his opinions to himself around Sage.
While we’re on it, he has the same basic attitude about marijuana. Ok, you can close your jaw. He even joked that his teenage cousin who’s selling pot to his friends at school ought to move to California and get a license to deal medical marijuana so can’t get arrested. Um, I could be wrong but I’m pretty sure there’s not a state in this country that allows a 15-year-old to sell pot- legal or otherwise. Talk about setting an example. However, I can’t tell you how many of my friends are married to guys that still smoke pot- 30s, 40s, 50s. And they ain’t got cancer. Not yet anyway. Ryan stopped smoking around the time we started dating because it’s not my thing. But his attitude about it not being bad or addicting or toxic hasn’t changed. Yes, it’s a hot button topic.
I don’t necessarily diss people who smoke; many of my friends puff in the trees at various Utah resorts but I won’t date them. Anyone who needs a substance (illegal or otherwise) on a regular basis to ‘take the edge off’ is an emotional retard. Relationships are hard. Ryan’s argument is that it’s not as bad as cigarettes or alcohol. I don’t date drunks or smokers either. Again, I worry that his opinions will sway Sage they way they have his cousin. If anyone can offer a way to debate this argument AND WIN, I’m all ears.