I go in for “genetic counseling” next week. Now, I don’t really think I need counseling, but because I’m thinking of being tested for inherited cancer genes, counseling must come first. I have nothing against counseling, but at this point in my life, I assume I carry the gene (there are various types…the one I’m referring to makes one more susceptible to breast and ovarian cancer). I mean, my maternal aunt tested positive for this gene (she’s in remission from breast cancer). My mother has not been tested, but she’s in remission from breast and ovarian cancer, so whether she has the gene or not makes little difference since she’s dealt with the disease. Counseling is meant to help people come to grips with the news if they test positive for the gene; however, this is the news I’m expecting, so I won’t be surprised if it’s confirmed. On the other hand, if I test negative for it (which is possible), I will be completely shocked and elated. And it’s this possibility that has inspired me to think about testing.
Edit: Okay. So after doing some research on the BRCA 1 and 2 genes–the genes the test will look for–I may need some counseling after all. That’s some scary shit in a very there’s-nothing-you-can-do-about-it kind of way. I had limited my thinking to specific types of cancer, but have now discovered that at least one of the genes can increase the odds of pancreatic cancer (not to rate the danger levels of cancers, but that one is pretty damn scary). So, if the test comes back positive, the plan is to remove all my internal organs and replace them with robot parts.