This is how I have begun to refer to the test kits from the genetic testing company. In case you hadn’t already guessed from that title, the testing is done on saliva collected from the client. I ordered 2 yesterday. They should arrive by next week. I’ll be able to take the one to my paternal first cousin over Easter weekend. The other is for me. I didn’t expect the anxiety I’m feeling over all this. It’s not anxiety in necessarily a negative way. It’s just that the knowing my “answer” is right around the corner is giving me a ton of nervous energy. Ever since I ordered the kits, I’ve been taking health and behavioral surveys on the company’s website. They work with a lot of programs that compare the genetics to the survey answers to try to find genetic markers for things ranging from the pattern of hair growth to depression. It’s neat to know that my data will be submitted anonymously to help further such research.
I know that a lot of people are afraid of the “big brother” aspect. What if my information were to fall into the wrong hands and be used against me for insurance, employment, or any other purpose? The scientist in me says that someone has to be at the forefront of this technology to further research and that there are legal protections against such use of this information. I’m sure the legal protections are not flawless, but I’m willing to take the risk – a risk that I perceive as very small – to both find my answer and maybe help a researcher find his/hers.
That’s the only update I really have for now. I’ll keep you all posted on this process.