My wife, being an adopted little one has no information on her ancestry. Back in November, I saw where you can have your DNA analyzed to find out your heritage and a bit more. So, we purchased a kit and since they gave a 20% discount on a second one, I opted to have mine done also.
I received my results back shortly after Christmas and found my heritage was mostly European; which I already knew, since both of my parent’s ancestry came from Europe at one place or another. But the information also revealed a great deal of health and human trait info. Just a sampling of mine:
- Male (absolutely correct)
- Likely brown eyes (close enough)
- Straighter hair than average (correct)
- Decreased odds of male pattern baldness (my wife says I have a blonde spot)
- Not Malaria resistant (damn!)
- Likely O type blood (correct)
- Greater tendency to overeat (no argument)
- And I am much less efficient at learning to avoid erors (surely not!)
It also lists information on how susceptible I am to various hereditary diseases, medications and bad habits. No need to go into that here. Suffice to say I need to watch for things that may crop up in life.
Shortly after sending in our spit samples, the all-knowing FDA, with its common sense reasoning, decided companies like the one we purchased our kit from, should not be giving us our health information. So anyone purchasing a kit after that time would only receive their ancestry and not the health info. We were in the grandfathered section sort of speak, so we got the whole nine yards. … Déjà vu?
As I scan through all the information, ancestry, health issues, traits and nuances; I realize the information given is well above my IQ grade. There are words I’ve never heard. Ever hear the word: genome? Or haplogroup? Genotype? Promethease, pyrimidines or purines? Don’t bother looking them up in Wikipedia. It just gets more complicated. I found out my mother came from haplogroup K, circa 500 years ago, before the era of intercontinental travel. And Pop came from haplogroup R1b1b2. … Yeah, thank goodness for “cut & paste”.
I talked my mother into doing her DNA also and had a kit sent to her house. She commented she didn’t know if she could spit into the little tube or not. I had to question her on that, as she is almost 95 years old and doesn’t know how to spit? I learned to do that when I was a little boy in parochial school with a big sister.
We are used to seeing shows where they send DNA to the crime lab to bring the killer to justice. Simple as fingerprints I thought. After all, we have seen the little miniature spiral that represents our DNA, and how much info could that microscopic thing have?
Well, I downloaded my raw data to store away in case I decided to dig deeper into it, and was astonished to find it was 960 thousand lines of text! Got that? 960,614 lines of text, just under a million. From a microscopic spiral!
You know, at times like this I think the Creator knows a bit more than we do, and I am reminded of the words: For what seems to be God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom …
I bow to Him.
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Elleta Nolte said:
This is all most interesting and reads somewhat like a love story, your parting with much loved bits and pieces; I don’t think you should have parted with them. I understand the sorrow. I have thousands of bits of paper in regard to all of you and all my writings. I leave them all to you all.
As soon as Gary gets here and unwraps the DNA items and directions, I’ll do the spitting. I will not want to do this; it seems awfully unladylike, but I want to know what little bit I may learn. Maybe I can get an inklings of what haplogroup k is, 500k years ago.