Physical in a Month

I have a physical in a month. 

I don’t know many people who get excited about their physical exam: the questions, the poking, the prodding, the glove… Makes me cough just thinking about it. 

I always seem to go into a physical filled with shame, holding my head down, reliving a dream I had where I’m about to take a college final for which I didn’t study. I stare in disbelief at the first question which commands me to “diagram and discuss the anatomy of a beaver.” I try to remind myself what a beaver looks like. I start writing words furiously on my paper: rodent like, flat tail, big teeth… but then I get curious as to why this question is even on my music history test in the first place. I look around and I’m horrified when I realize that I’m not only in the wrong classroom, but in the wrong building, and at the wrong school. I begin wandering around the unfamiliar campus aimlessly asking people where I am and how I got there.

Yeah, that’s kind of how it is when I go for my physical. 

I sit in the waiting room until my name is called and suddenly, my inner dialogue begins:

“What were you thinking two months ago when you ate that donut? You said you were hungry. You could have eaten that celery stick just as easily, but no, you had to have something with powdered sugar because you were really hungry. And then you decided to have three more because you were having a bad day. Well, you’re about to see what a bad day really is, Mr. Hungry Man. And when you tell your wife about your physical results, celery sprinkled with kale is about all you’re going to see for decades. Do you like the sound of that, you sorry excuse for a little man? I sure you don’t. Oh, I don’t believe this. What is this I see coming down your cheek, a tear? Well you better get used to those, Buddy Boy, because they’re about to flow down your face like Niagara Falls…”

I have a physical in a month. 

I guess it’s time to cram.

*Photo courtesy of Kelly Sikkema and Unsplash

Results of My Physical

snapping glove

I had a physical last week. That evening I bought a new scale.

However, I realized that:

  • It’s time for me to regularly evaluate issues with my body.
  • It’s time for me to get back in the groove of exercising regularly and consistently.
  • It’s time for me to make those important doctor’s appointments to help me live a more healthy lifestyle.

What’s my biggest issue?

In the words of comedian Jim Gaffigan, “These aren’t skinny jeans, I’m just fat.”

In other words, I’m overweight, obese, stout, full-figured, corpulent, pudgy, flabby, rotund, paunchy, fleshy, and well upholstered. In layman’s terms, I’m fat. I may not be grossly overweight, but I’m still fat, like 8 and 10 other adults in the Greater New Orleans area.


But, it’s time to put a stop to it.

This past week, I kept reading and kept being convicted by

1 Corinthians 6:19-20. In it, Paul writes,

“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit?

Therefore honor God with your body.”

That means I’m going to honor God with how I take care of this body that He gave me. It means I’m going to honor Him with what I eat, what I drink, how I exercise, how I rest, and how I visit health care professionals.
Who’s with me?

Results of My Physical

I had my annual physical this past Friday.  (insert groans here from every guy over 40)  I stood on the medical scale that always seems to add 5-10 lbs, looked away as I was stuck with a syringe for blood work, and listened to the dreaded snap of the latex glove.  Finally, after hearing from my doctor that I appear to be in excellent health, he asked me if there was anything that had been bothering me.


Most of the time, when I hear that question, I always say, “No, I’m feeling pretty good.”

However, this time I had a different answer.  I sighed heavily and said, “Well, ok, in the last few months, I’ve had a few times when I’ve felt like my food wasn’t going all the way down to my stomach.”

This caught his attention.  I could tell because he stopped writing on his clipboard.

So I continued.

“At first I thought I was just in a hurry and had taken too big of a bite, but there have been times when I was sure that I had chewed my food sufficiently.  Whenever it happened, I usually stood, raised my hands over my head, and the food normally continued to my stomach.”

“Anything else?” he asked.

“Yes,” I replied.  “I cough a lot after I eat.”

After a few more questions, my doctor said, “I think we need to examine your esophagus.”

“Okay,” I replied.  “How do we do that?”

“Well, you can either drink barium and we can x-ray you or we can perform an esophagogastroduodenoscopy.”

“Did you just make that up?”

“No,” he laughed.  “It’s an endoscopic procedure where we scope the upper part of the gastrointestinal tract.  Sometimes there’s a narrowing of the esophagus, but this will let us know for sure.”

“Why would I do that other than drink the cyanide?”

“You mean barium?” he asked.

“Yes, sorry.  Hopefully there’s a difference.”

“If you drink the barium and have the x-ray and there’s a problem, then we still have to do the esophagogastroduodenoscopy.”

“Is it dangerous?” I asked.

“No,” he replied.  “I’ve had it myself.”

“Ok,” I said.  “Let’s do it.”

So, I’m scheduled to have an esophagogastroduodenoscopy.  I’ll let you know what happens.  If you’ve had one, let me know.  I’d like to hear your story.