To check that my high blood pressure isn’t pre-eclampsia, I had to do a 24-hour urine collection. That’s right, I had to collect all my pee for a full day and night. At this stage of pregnancy normally I have to get up to pee a couple of times each night, but last night my mind must have been worried about the project so kept waking me up, and every time I woke up I had to pee, so I was up about SEVEN times in the night. At one point I even dreamed I’d done the whole pee-collection wrong and had to start all over on a fresh 24-hour pee project.
When I brought my bright orange jugful of pee to the lab this morning, the lab worker said, “I’ll bet you’re happy to be rid of that.” So true. (More joy: even if the labwork comes back negative for toxemia, if my blood pressure stays up I’ll probably have to do the pee-collecting thing over again; maybe once a week. It’s all worth it for me and the baby to be well, of course. But not fun.)
Anyway this made me think of one of my favorite stories from Dan Peterson, who was one of Dean’s Arabic professors at BYU. I think this happened while Dr. Peterson was living with his wife and their young kids in Egypt, and one of his kids got an illness for which, to find the source, Dr. Peterson had to collect stool samples not just from everyone in his family, but from everyone in the household, which included an Egyptian gardener, a maid, etc. So he’s got the precious samples in a bag in one hand and he’s taking a bus to the lab, and it’s a crowded bus — standing-room only — so his other hand is clutched to a pole on the bus. And as the bus is going along, someone starts unbuckling his watch from the arm that’s clutching the pole. To stop the thief he would have had to let go of the bag of samples in his other hand. So he just stands there, and lets his watch be taken from his wrist.