I’m a little embarrassed to admit that it was five months ago that I posted about starting my genetic testing… Oops! To say I was overwhelmed by the support and outreach about this testing would be an understatement.
Y’all have taught me so much through this. I’ve enjoyed hearing your stories, your fears and your questions. But what I’ve loved, is that they mimic mine throughout this whole process.
As you can obviously tell, my testing didn’t work out. Testing can cost up to $1,500 per gene (testing 24 -30 genes) and even though I qualified for the testing, my insurance wanted to charge about $3,000… Needless to say, I wasn’t exactly sold on that option.
To be honest with you all, I was embarrassed. Embarrassed that I’d written about this, talked with so many of you and yet had no answers for you or myself. I was discouraged to say the least. All of my fear and anxiety built into that moment and I was stuck with no answers.It felt like being at the top of a roller coaster waiting to fly down and then you wake up from your dream and feel empty or let down. You’re not scared or excited; you’re just there.
Five months later (and several vague snap chats), I’m so happy to share with you real updates. I was introduced to this company in California called Color Genetics. It’s an independent company that works with skilled physicians to do genetic testing. If you’re like me, words like “independent” in the world of genetic testing made me think $$$. Wrong. The test was $250.00. [By the way, this is NOT a sponsored post.]
How does it work?
You order the kit that includes a sample tube. You provide a saliva DNA sample in the tube. Activate your kit online and provide a family history of cancer. They provide you with a pre-labeled box to ship it back in. They test for 30 genes, including BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 (the breast cancer gene). They also test for the Ovarian Cancer gene — which if you know my story at all, you know that’s the most important one to me.I sent in the package this morning and once it’s been analyzed, they’ll email me my results.
As I type, I remember that last time I was writing about this. I remember the waiting room at KU Cancer Center. The people in there who reminded me so much of the battle my mom bravely fought but gracefully lost. I remember the feeling of pure fear at my core and the panic attack I had in the waiting room while my eyes filled with tears; and it still brings tears to my eyes. To know that these results could change how I see my future… How do you even begin to describe that? Powerless is a start.
But then I think of why. Why I’m doing this, who I’m doing this for and the impact this can have on my life and those around me. Through her own life, my mom taught me to use what I’m given and to never be a victim of what life throws your way. If I’m not doing that and talking about it, I’m just existing.
As soon as I have my results, good or bad, I’ll fill you in. Until then, prayers, well wishes or whatever you wish to send my way would be amazing.