I am broaching a sensitive subject today. One that took me a long time to do anything about, let alone write about publicly. Today, I tell the world (or the small handful of people who read this!) that I have a growth on one of my testicles. Today I tell the world that I’m freaking out a little, but that’s okay.
I’ve known about the small protuberance (it sounds better than growth) for a couple of months now. I discovered it after I had a recurring feeling of, for lack of better terms, numbness in my nether-regions; in particular, in one testicle. It had happened a couple of times before, and never lasted very long, but this time, as I was wondering what was going on, I just reached down and grabbed hold.
And there it was – a small lump on my right testicle. Despite knowing it was there, I didn’t have the balls to do anything or say anything to anyone at that point. I just let it be. “There’s nothing to worry about,” I would say to myself. “In all likelihood, it’s just a cyst.” I didn’t even mention anything to my wife.
Over the summer, I had my regular check-in with my family doctor to see how my diabetes was holding up. I thought, “Okay, I’ll mention it to him and get him to check it out, just in case.” I sat down in the room, we went over my blood test results. He asked if there was anything else. I said no, thanked him, got up and walked out.
Grow a pair you coward!
Over this past weekend, I decided that enough was enough. I couldn’t continue dicking around. On Monday, I worked up some testicular fortitude, and I called my doctor’s office. It so happened that he could see me that afternoon. So off I went.
The exam itself was fine, if not awkward. I’m not used to dropping my pants in front of other men. And let’s call a spade a spade, there was some stage fright going on as well! But that’s all fine. My doctor performed the exam and told me that there is a strong possibility that it’s simply a cyst or benign lump, but given the location, he felt better having a scan done. He told me that he would get in touch with a specialist and that they would get back to me in a week or two to schedule an ultrasound.
That evening, on the drive home, I revealed all of this to my wife. It definitely caught her off-guard, and I apologize for that. It’s something that I should have discussed with her from the moment that I first noticed it. I don’t know why I didn’t say anything. Probably because I was afraid and speaking it out loud would somehow make it real. And I’ll be honest – shit got real.
I’ve been in my head for the past two days, just thinking about what could happen; about what the results will be; about when I’ll even get the call for my ultrasound; about whether I should tell my family, my friends. The past couple of days at work have been a little more uneven for me than usual.
Earlier this morning, I got the phone call from the Radiology department at the hospital. My appointment is scheduled for 9AM tomorrow, November 9th. I’m quite relieved at how quickly all of this occurred. I’ll update once I have some more info to share.
As much as it was difficult to even bring this up with my doctor or my wife, it was (and is) challenging with regards to being public about the whole ordeal. I finally decided to write a blog post regardless, but I’ve opted to not share directly to Facebook as I usually do. So only those of you in the Twitterverse or who happen to follow my blog here on WordPress will see this. Maybe someday I will be ballsy enough to post it on Facebook too.
So I will end today with the following message to all of the men out there: grab your gonads! It is a simple thing to do as you’re getting out the shower. Give your boys a check and make sure everything is good. Hell, get your spouse/partner to help and have a little fun afterwards. Whatever it takes, just do it.
If anyone needs any resources, there are no shortage of sites online that will show you how to perform a testicular self examination.
Update – December 12, 2017
I had my follow-up with my doctor today and got a clean bill of health. The ultra-sound showed nothing that led to any belief of cancerous growths, so it’s been chalked up as a cyst. Panic averted. 🙂