Men, listen up!!! It’s time to take your health seriously

“I’d like to thank the Academy for this prestigious award, and thank a few others while I’m here…”

Today is Men’s Health Day, a day set aside to remind us of the importance of watching our own health.  As men, we tend to ignore the signs our bodies give us, either shrugging it off or postponing follow up to a time that is more convenient.  Today is meant to say “that’s not enough”, and to encourage us all to listen and act more frequently to those signs.

I know the drill all to well, having suffered the pain of diverticulitis to the point that I had very little options – either get surgery or risk the next episode being fatal.  Even when faced with this dilemma, I had my reservations.  “Why deal with this now?  I’m far too busy for surgery!”, I recall saying. 

In the end, it wasn’t my wife, or my daughter, or even my doctor that convinced me to have the surgery.  It was another male friend, having recently made a different yet similar choice to address his issues through surgery, that convinced me to do the same.  Man to man, so to speak.

Thankfully I followed through with the surgery, having 8 inches of my colon removed.  Turns out, had I ignored the issue the next episode would have been fatal.  They literally found portions of my colon fused to my bladder, with an abscess forming.  And if it had burst – lights out.

So today I’d like to use my leadership blog’s pulpit to offer some encouragement to men all over to take their health seriously.  And if you’ll allow me, I’ll use some humor to drive the point home.  Consider this my acceptance speech for having made the right choice on my own health…

“I’d like to thank the Academy for this prestigious award, and thank a few others while I’m here…

To my legs, for always being there to support me.  When times were tough, you were always there to lift me up and take a stand for what’s right.  And if it wasn’t for you, I would never have able to put my best foot forward.

To my feet, for helping me walk the right path, even when the road ahead was rough and unpaved.  It was you that helped me go the extra mile.

To my arms, for always giving me a helpful hand.  You’ve always been that shoulder to lean on, not just for me but for so many others. 

To my ears, for always being there to listen.  It is your clarity and understanding that has always helped me to hear the wisdom of others.

To my eyes, for showing me the way.  You have always been there to look out for me, and for that I am grateful.

To my torso, for always having my back.  I’ve always admired your strength, and its that character that has helped me stand tall in the face of adversity.

To my digestive system, who sounded the alarm so many times recently.  I’m sorry I didn’t listen, next time I’ll trust my gut.

To my liver and kidneys, for all the times we celebrated.  My true drinking buddies – we’ve had some fun times haven’t we?

To my brain, for your wisdom, guidance, and advice.  And for always being at the center of everything I do.  It is you I’ll remember most.

And finally, to my heart, for never quitting on me.  It was you who has kept up with me throughout all of this, and you who I depend on every day.  Thank you for always loving me!

While meant to be light-hearted, there is a clear message I want to give to all of you men out there.  Our body and our health are far too important to overlook.  When our health is good, we tend to overlook their importance.  When they aren’t, we realize what we had.  Address what you have now before it’s too late.

Happy Men’s Health Day 2022.  Take care of yourself…

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