A brief background. An African American male, looking for answers about his ancestry, does some investigating, then years later gets an Ancestry DNA Test. Ok you’re basically caught up.

*I do understand that each test is different. I also understand that this test is not 100% accurate and will not unlock all the secrets of my past. Every piece of information I have learned from my family and this test will give me a better understanding of my family’s past and my ancestry. This is all just to help me on my journey of discovering my ancestry and myself.*

After years of having this test on my person. I finally took the test. The waiting was killing me. I signed up for text message updates. Every so many days I got an update. I was like a kid waiting for a gift. I would talk to my brother and his wife about what their results were. My brother would go back and forth with our parents about his results, it was entertaining. 

See, you have to realize something. It’s scary to finally learn a truth that has eluded me for years. If you can recall I said my mom was never committed to what she was told. When I was waiting for my test results she told me her grandfather was adopted. I was like, It makes sense why she was so hesitant all these years. 

We were told all these stories passed down over the years and like I said before they were all similar. Stop me if you heard this. Your [insert grand here] was [Sioux, Cherokee, Black Foot, Wanappe, Apache, Algunquin, Clear water, etc] and you have a European lineage from when slave masters intermingled with house slaves. Your ancestors are African, and that’s where the story ends. Only problem with this story is that it only tells you the last 4, maybe 5 generations of your history. Your history goes back 10,000 and possibly 1 million years ago. One ancestor will not change the fact that you have hundreds of years of informational DNA from one group of people in your family line. One ancestor from another race/culture will only add to the dominant one still in your DNA. If you have 99 string beans and add 1 pea to them they don’t automatically become peas. They are still string beans. 

You are a combination of a genetic lottery of trillions of numbers. I am no scientist, BUT! I have been researching this topic for a long time now and here’s a simple way to explain this to you. I’ll use myself as an example. Imagine you have a lottery machine. Each ball in the machine has a number on it. 

#1 representing African 

#2 representing European

#3 Representing Native American or American Indian

#4 representing other

There are a total of 100 balls, #1 (65 balls), #2 (25 balls), #3 (8 balls), #4 (2 balls). Now what is the possibility of you getting 1, 2, 3, and 4? Well I’ll tell you there are 10,000 possibilities. So! You have a 1 and 10,000 chance to get the combination 1234. Now times that by 100 and you now have a chance of 1 and 1,000,000 chances to get the combination 1234. Also you have to realize there is only an 8% chance to get ball number 3 even if you just tried to draw that number by itself. Your possible combinations would look like 1112, 1122, 1223, 1111, etc… 

Do you have a better understanding? 

So I have kept you waiting long enough. Here are my results.   

For more data to compare this all, I also did an ancestry check. These results look at my DNA in relation to ancient groups and their current descendants. 

There you have it. What I was told was not false, it was just a small piece to what I am. Since I love a good story, here’s the story of my DNA. 

My DNA’s journey started in Africa. It traversed up and down the coast from South Africa to Senegal. It even made a few trips through Mozambique, Zambia, The Congo, and up to Mali. It later moved along the northern coast of Africa and settled, for a small time in the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern areas. My DNA then started to backpack through Europe mainly Spain, Portugal, then up North in modern day Norway, England and Ireland where it settled for a brief period. 

At this same time there was a split and some of my DNA stayed in Europe while some went to America. It then bounced back and forth between America and Europe due to intermingling of slaves and slave owners. It had an extremely small stint in some native american communities but ultimately settled in the south. Around the Mid 1900’s it made its way to the North where it is to this day.       

There you have it, that is me. My parents were not wrong, they just only knew a small portion of my history. Yes there is native american in my DNA, but the amount is so small that is almost irrelevant in comparison to the amount of African and European DNA I have. 

Do I now feel complete?

Well no. I mean I feel like me. I have lived so long just being me that I was Ok with any result (but if it said Wakandan I would have flipped because that would be awesome and also I might have been made that i spent $99 and my time was wasted to screw with me, LOL). I am happy to know that my history began before slavery. It also started to open up new doors and questions in my life and family. My brother and I have been looking up information about Yoruban people here and there. I also learned from a great aunt of mine that many African Americans, during slavery times used to say, they were native american. It was easier to say and a little more acceptable if you were mixed with native american. Having this info has opened up a world of questions for my family. BUT! Unlike before they approach each question, answer and discovery with exuberance. They are excited to find out more about their ancestors. My dad has even questioned his father more about our family’s past. He has told me some super interesting things like how his father was not his biological father. 

I feel these results, if anything, have opened up the ability to talk about hard, past family secrets and explore who we are as a family. 

Published by Jamar Reed

I'm just a Father who likes to write. Hopefully my words will mean something in a sea of countless others.

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