Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Where have you been and why are you carrying a jug of pee??

It's been while!  But then, I haven't exactly been myself lately.  In addition to balancing a full-time job, I've also been working on getting back into school (one that will actually return my emails and update their website in a timely manner, unlike my recent experiences), learning to cook, volunteering for test-knitting (more on that later), and dealing with fatigue, muscle weakness, lack of sleep, and mood swings.

That last bit is what's been eating most of my time.  Since March, I've been in and out of the endocrinologist's office for various tests to rule out hypothyroidism, diabetes, and a myriad of other conditions that all share the same vague symptoms.  I've had what feels like gallons of blood drawn, I've chewed on nasty-tasting pieces of cotton, but this last test takes the cake.

Most of these tests were because my cortisol was too high and they wanted to either rule out or confirm Cushing's.  After my chew-on-cotton-to-collect-spit test (ew), I got a call saying that my spit came back normal, but since my blood test had slightly elevated cortisol, they wanted to do a urine test.   A 24-hour urine test, to be exact.  I was told to come pick up the kit.  I assumed it was going to be a whole bunch of pee cups or something like that.  Apparently, I was wrong.

I had The Bastard drive me over there, since we had errands to run anyway, and he waited in the car while I went up to get the kit.  After a few minutes of waiting in the waiting room, a nurse waved me back.  Then handed me a giant, bright orange jug.

THIS giant orange jug, specifically!  Seriously, it's almost as big as a milk jug.

She said, "Ok, what you need to do is start in the morning.  Don't collect your first urination of the morning, but every one after that needs to go in this jug.  Then collect the first one of the next morning and you're done.  Oh, and it also needs to be refrigerated."

Aaaand that's where I almost lost it.  I'd been trying so hard not to laugh, and I'm pretty sure what came out would be classified as a "guffaw".  Not only was I going to have to collect my pee, but I had to refrigerate it?? I think the nurse was having trouble containing the giggles as well by this point.

In any case, I took my giant orange pee jug and walked back to the parking lot with as much dignity as one can have while carrying a giant orange pee jug.  I got in the truck and the following conversation happened:

Dan: What the hell is that?

Me (grinning): Oh you're going to love this.

Dan: Do I even want to know?

Me: Well, you kind of have to know.  See, I'm going to have to collect all my pee over a 24-hour period in this jug -

Dan: And why do I need to know this?

Me: Well... because it needs to go in the refrigerator.

Dan: ...no.  You are not putting your pee next to the food.

Me: I know that!  That's why I'm going to use the beer fridge.

Dan: WHAT? You're not putting your pee in my beer fridge!

Me: OUR beer fridge, and we're not using it right now, anyway.  It's not even plugged in.

Dan: That's not the point!  It's the fact that I'll know that your pee has been in there whenever I do put beer in it!

Me: You do know I'm not peeing directly into the fridge, right?

Dan: Beside the point.  It's the principle.

In the end, I won after I remembered that we'd originally received the beer fridge (a 2-foot-tall mini-fridge) from his mom after her office had decided to discard it.  This fridge used to hold blood samples.  Obviously, they were packaged in a secure and sanitary manner, and we thoroughly disinfected it just to be safe, but seriously, if that didn't bother him, then my pee should be just fine!

So I went through all that to get to this: I don't have Cushing's.  But I do have PCOS, which is why my hormones are all out of whack.  Now that I'm being medicated for that, I should be getting back to normal and should actually update this thing once in awhile.

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