Family Tree/Family Shelterbelt/Family Forest

Image Twenty-three chromosomes create one unique human being.  I am embarking on a quest that I have been longing to take for twenty years.

I was adopted within the family.  I know who my biological mother is but I do not know the biological father.  My last name is still my last name, however.  My father(the one who raised me) is technically my uncle.   Does that make sense?

I’ll try not to over-complicate it.  I do know of other siblings.  I have 3 half siblings total.  One’s my older brother who was adopted also and so we were raised together.
In this particular post I do not wish to go into too much detail about my biological parents.  But it is something I’m willing to sit down, have a coffee, and chat about it with someone should they wish to hear my tale.

My parents(the ones who raised me, to me, they are my real parents) had always told me I was adopted and they did so rather poetically, “You were born from the heart” they would tell me.  Since they had always told me since infancy, I cannot say that I ever remember a time being sat down and told this truth.  There weren’t any surprises or shock in that regard.  It was told to me, I understood, and I went on with life.

I recall feeling like an outsider in grade school during some sort of assignment or discussion where children would say, “I have my dads’ eyes and my mothers’ nose.”  I remember feeling left out that I couldn’t really participate in that.  As the grades passed and onward into high school, student’s would boast or say with pride, “I have Norwegian heritage! German! Czech! Irish!”  I only knew bits and pieces and I could only follow what my parents were.  But to be honest, I don’t really look Caucasian.  I have felt and known that there was another side to my own family tree too.

When I think of family tree I picture mine as a forest of mystery.  In my family tree, my family created a family shelter-belt to protect me from certain truths. I fell into a deep depression during my early 20s when I realized those truths but now as an adult that is a quarter of a century old I feel like I am ready.

I keep a healthy distance from those truths within the realm of my biological origins.

Finding out what my ethnicity is a very nice perk that 23andme does.  It has been something I’ve always wanted to know.  Where did those seeds get planted and how far across the sea do my roots stretch?  But then I hit another wall–do I really want to know?  Is it best not to?  What about keeping that sweet mystery?

At this point in my life I have been experiencing some health problems.  When going to the doctor I hit a brick wall when the question is asked, “Are there any health problems in your family history?”  I normally don’t know what to say, sure my parents have some health problems but I know nothing about my biological side one bit. To help me take a pro-active take on my own health, I feel that this needs to be done.

Before taking this journey I pondered and meditated on this thought:

Genetics do not equal destiny…but it may determine whether or not I like cilantro.

For more information on what 23andme does please visit their website:

I could go on and on about what it is that they do but in a nutshell they take your saliva sample and figure out what diseases you may or may not be susceptible to and also what you ethnicity is.  I will be sure to follow up this post with my results in a couple weeks.

Finding out and understanding more about who I am, where I came from, how I got here ,  and what I can do to stay here is part of my ongoing adventure into being an Authentic.

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3 Responses to Family Tree/Family Shelterbelt/Family Forest

  1. Jenn O. says:

    Ditto – good luck! I hope you’ll follow up with what you find out. I’ve been thinking about doing a DNA test to learn more about my genealogy.

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