I’ve not always been that good at going to see the doctor, especially about personal or Embarrassing Bodies-type things. In the last few years though, there have been a few little victories against my reticence, where I have decided that however uncomfortable I feel, I just need to man up and go talk to someone or else I’ll never make progress. Here, at my local surgery in Bounds Green, was another.
I think I shall leave the details intriguingly vague, but suffice to say I had to take my pants down during the visit. I must admit I was nervous at the point where I had to start talking about the issue, but not so nervous that I couldn’t say it, and not so nervous that I was sitting in some cowards’ cafe instead, supping a cowards’ cappuccino (I’ll do that later though, I’m sure.)
G is also for…Grasp the nettle
I find going to the doctor quite humbling, and grounding. It reminds you that we’re all just people with bodies that may serve us well or may fail us from one day to the next. It also brings perspective: other worries, concerns and insecurities get subsumed, absorbed into the big blob called Am I going to die?
The locum I saw was pleasant, and helpful in answering my questions. I learned properly for the first time how I should be checking myself (hold each testicle like a hamburger, she said – here’s a video for you, though you should know it contains male nudity and a slightly unnecessary focus on latex gloves), and also how often (once a month). Why don’t I know this? Does everyone else know this? Shouldn’t we have been taught it in school or something? The main thing, I suppose, is that I know now.
The visit overall was reassuring – I almost certainly don’t have testicular cancer – but we’re not quite done. I’m going to have an ultrasound of my nether regions in the coming weeks just to be sure. Very glad I went though.
While I was there I noticed a leaflet for something called a “Man MOT“, an initiative running in Haringey where men can ‘chat’ (they put it in quotes, not me; and not sure why) to a health professional about their health via a computer, tablet or smartphone. It seems a good idea, and hopefully it can have a positive impact.
It seems everyone’s talking about men’s health: in the GP surgery, at work, on the internet…perhaps the job is done and it’s time for a shave?
Nah. I’ll see you back here tomorrow!
Please feel free to donate to my Movember campaign – all donations very much appreciated!