June 12, 2024



5 min read

It’s March of 2022.  The day before St. Patricks day but I believe my luck is running out.  I need to know what this pain in my chest is before I drive myself crazier than I am.  Is it cancer?!  I don’t want to die of breast cancer like my mother.  Why is this, the worst situation, the first option I thought of?

According to nationalbreastcancer.org ,  less than one percent of all breast cancer cases develop in men, and only one in a thousand men will ever be diagnosed with breast cancer.

Chances for that happening to me is slim, according to that website, but for the fact I watched my mother take her last breath, from breast cancer, you can see how I could think that.

This has to be the summer of 2016 and I’m at Gold’s Gym trying out a new leg exercise.  Barbell split squats on the smith machine.  Part of my exercise development is targeting muscle groups I don’t like.

What that looks like, is trying new exercises for said muscle group.  My thought process is, maybe the reason I don’t like to target this specific muscle group, could be because I’ve yet to find the right exercise that will make it enjoyable.

I believe working out should be a joyous experience.  As you know, I don’t like leg day at all.  At that point, leg day was not joyous.

I call myself trying out this split squat, and on my last rep I felt something in my left hamstring uncoil as I stood up from the kneeling lunge position.  It was painful to my leg and ego as I limped out the gym that day.

Here I am trying something new, and boom, I get hurt. I’ll never do that exercise again.

Needless to say, I never got that checked out.  I rested for a few weeks until it healed, so I thought but it came back to pay me a visit.

It’s election day 2020 and I’m working out in my home gym.  Guess what day it is? LEG DAY!

Up to this point, that hamstring had been giving me some issues, but they were little so I chucked it up to healing and adjusting.

I’m feeling good. I have the crisp November air filling my gym.  I have CT Fletcher playing on the tv via youtube.  Watching others workout is motivation for me to get started on my workout.  At the same time I have music blasting.  YOU DON’T KNOW remix by Jay Z.  The horns in that song gets me so amped.

I have 225lbs on my back.  It’s my 4th set of 10 barbell squats.  I’m on my 9th rep and I feel I can go to at least 15.  On that 14th rep I felt something on my left side but I pushed past that little pain, because CT is in my left perifial with ISYMFS on his chest.

I got 15 reps but at what price? This feeling in my left lower back is so painful I can barely walk up the stairs, let alone put on my socks.  What did I do to myself??? Needless to say, I never got that checked out.

It’s the morning of March 2022. The day before St. Patricks day but I believe my luck is running out.  I need to figure if this pain in my chest is cancer or some type of muscle soreness that won’t go away.

I’m about 12 mins into my morning cardio session in my home gym.  I chose to run on the treadmill this morning vs riding the stationary bike.  My headphones are in.  Music on blast, DJ KHALED ft HER & MIGOS- WE GOING CRAZY! I like how they sampled Shawty Lo- They Know.  This beat gives me a nice pace to run at.

The cool spring air is flowing through the gym because I have all the doors in the house open.  This causes a cycle of air to flow through the house.  When I sweat, I can barely feel it because the air cools it almost instantly.  This tells me I need to run faster to I warm my body up.

As the song continues to play, WE GOING CRAZY, I ask myself the same thing because this feeling in my right pec, I’m starting to question.  I only feel it when I run or the day after chest day.

My grandmother told me, “A closed mouth, don’t get fed.”, so if I wanted to find out what this feeling is, I have to ask for help.

Later that day, I asked my girlfriend what should I do about this feeling in my chest.  She reminded me, YOU HAVE INSURANCE NOW, GO GET CHECKED OUT.

The importance of health insurance and the need to have it is something I didn’t think too much of in my younger years.  Now that I’m older, I realize how much I need it.  The last time I had health insurance was over 15 years ago when I worked for the hospital.  Since then, I’ve been living off of God’s grace.  The two injuries I mentioned earlier.  The reason why I never got those checked out, I didn’t have any insurance!

December of 2021, I was able to sign up in the open enrollment and get some insurance, and it’s been the best choice I have made in regards to my health. With it I was able to schedule an appointment to get checked out by my general practitioner, Dr. Williams.

I let her know about what was going on with my chest, and my concern if it was cancer.

After testing, she assured me it wasn’t.  What I was feeling was the result of an injury I suffered last summer.   I had to get a cyst of the epidermis drained, and the result of that caused some tissue scarring, therefore resulting in the feeling I was having in my chest.  I was relieved when she told me that.  She prescribed some topical creme to apply daily to the area and I have been feeling better since.

We also talked about my other ailments or injuries, which resulted in setting up and attending my first physical therapy/ rehab session.  Now I am on the other side. I have to listen and follow the directions of my physical therapist.  She assigns exercises that I can do at home to strengthen my legs.  

Don’t be afraid to ask questions.  You only get one life.  There’s no respawning like a video game.  Well, not that I know of, but TAKE CARE OF YOUR BODY.  I know I have a female dominated audience, but this is especially for the fellas.  GET SOME INSURANCE!

If you have some, SALUTE! Get checked up, get your blood work done.  Again, don’t be afraid to ask questions.  If you don’t have any insurance, let google be your friend.  For the third time, DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS.  TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF, YOU ONLY GET ONE LIFE.

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