The DOT physical

I don’t have a ton of time to write. This program has a LOT of information that I really need to immerse myself in, and I’ve got a pretty good handle on it so far… with a lot of work. And time. And brain power.

This morning was cool. We got our books, which includes a thick textbook, a couple of small manuals, the “bible,” also known as the Federal Motor Carrier’s Safety Regulations guide (small book but thick with info), a trucker’s road atlas, and a trucker-fashion clipboard document holder thingy that makes me feel all official. Sometimes the little things feel big. :)


Textbooks, logbooks and my fancy new clip board.

Speaking of feeling official, I passed my first “test” today, which is the DOT (department of transportation) physical. So I have my laminated Federal Medical card saying I am physically capable to safely drive a commercial vehicle! Woo hoo!

The physical itself is really quite simple, but absolutely necessary, by law, for me to train and drive a truck. So that pressure created a little anxiety as I sat in the clinic lobby with a very full bladder waiting for a nurse to call my name.

First up was a quick eye test, a hearing test, blood pressure and pulse. Easy. Next I had to pee in a cup for the drug test. Since I really had to pee, this was also easy. The temp of my liquids were in the right range, and I’m confident I passed that one with no problem.

Then I was tested on some easily-passed strength exercises – arms, legs, squats, balance – things like that. The thing I found the most interesting is when the doctor asked for me to take my shoes off to check to see if I had real feet. Apparently folks with prosthetics can’t receive their fed med card, so they have to check.

I had a small hiccup because I had seizures almost 15 years ago from my treatment for Aplastic Anemia. In order to pass me, the doctor needed to see records that prove the seizures were one incident caused by medication and that I’ve been free of any other incidents since. Thankfully I’ve kept up on regular blood tests to confirm I am still in remission, and there was a letter in the Affinity health system from my oncologist in Marshfield to another oncologist in Affinity regarding my history. It was enough. She passed me. Whew! Without that card, I wouldn’t be able to drive for training.

After class, Adam and I went to Fleet Farm where I picked up a small flashlight and my very first pair of super-stylin’ yellow work gloves.


Check me out... I won't drive in those pjs though... promise. :)

After Fleet Farm we went to Perkins and Adam helped me study for a few hours. I got a lot accomplished. Then back at home (which is temporarily our friends Richard and Meryl’s home *thanks to you both!*), I watched a long video that will help with the first portion of my DMV test. It was filmed in 1995, but had good information. My favorite part? When the narrator, who is clearly from the south used the term “bull twinkies” in place of bull sh**. That was a great way to end my night.

Tomorrow’s a long day. 7:30 am – 8:00 pm. Hopefully I can stay awake on the little sleep I’ll get tonight!

Tonight I love… bull twinkies. It’s my new favorite term.


Oh, and I saw this in the commons. Random.

Thanks for reading and being a part of my journey!

With love,
Toots Magoots
(Robin Grapa)


2 thoughts on “The DOT physical

  1. Say hi to Dan if you see him :) I told him you had started driving school and he was going to look for you when he was in the transportation building!

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