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  • Writer's pictureDaniel Jepsen

Another Day, Another PET Scan

Friday I got to spend the day at Saint Francis.

It's a lovely place, for a hospital, which is a bit like saying pneumonia is a lovely thing, for a disease.

I actually like Saint Francis, though I do find it a bit odd that every employee I interact with here is female. The registration desk? All female. The three technicians who did my ultrasounds. Female. The person who prepared me for the PET scan and then ran the machine? Female, of course.

The oncologist who referred me to all these tests? Female. Her entire office staff? You guessed it.

And all these women really wanted to check me out.

Now, a guy who looks like me is quite used to women checking him out. It just comes with the territory when you are this handsome:

But these women took it to another level.

I had two ultrasounds, in the places where they had to remove the lymph nodes after my last PET scan. Each one lasted about 8 hours. Okay, I may be exaggerating, but they seemed to take forever. They probed me like they were looking for gold.

Then they threw me in the tunnel of death (my overly-dramatic name for the PET machine) to get an even better look. You have to lie still as a corpse while the magic table zooms you back and forth under the probing lasers.

Now, of course, all this had a specific goal: to search thoroughly for any abnormalities that would show a return of cancerous cells. It was not a fun way to spend my Friday, but it is worth it to either get a clean bill of health, or to learn that there is something inside of me that will kill me if not taken care of.

As I reflect on this, I am reminded of a passage from the book of Psalms, where David says to his Lord:

Search me, God, and know my heart;

test me and know my anxious thoughts.

See if there is any offensive way in me,

and lead me in the way everlasting.

Psalm 139:23-24

Asking God to search you is not to be taken lightly. Often He will simply bring to mind things you need to change. But sometimes the searching will involve some sort of discomfort, as He allows things to interrupt our settled and safe state of being. He shakes the snow-globe, and allows us to glimpse what is present in our heart (though usually buried too far down to see).

No, the searching of God is not always fun. But it is always needed. My soul needs it far more than my body needs PET scans and ultrasounds, for I am an eternal being.

And so are you.

Don't be afraid to ask God to show you your hidden sins, your unconscious anxieties, the blind spots in your personality.

For the hands of the King are the hands of a healer.

P.S. for those interested: the PET scan and one ultrasound came back clean. I have not gotten the results from the other ultrasound.

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