Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Family search . . . . ….

080917_001So, back in the fall of 2016, my wife and I decided to do the DNA test. It was not done to look for relatives. It was just to see what we had in our genetic background. ■  As you can see (if the picture is large enough), I came out 84% Scandinavian, 11% Great Britain, and 5% other regions – a little Irish and a little Finish.  ■ I’m adopted and never had a thought of searching for my biological parents. I loved my parents and they’ll always be my parents.  ■ My mother, however, wanted me to search for my birth mother. I didn’t want to.  ■ But now armed with some genetic background, I thought maybe I’d give it a shot.  To do so, I needed an account – which I signed up for.  Now the search was on.  ■  I had very little information from the adoption documents.  Just my birth mother’s age; that she was from another state; that she had been a nursing student; and that she and the father had been friends for several years and that she had never told him of her pregnancy.  Not much to go on, but I did find a note that I had made that my mother had called me on my 55th birthday and given my the name of my birth mother. ■ The name was the key. How she found that info I don’t know, but she did. ■ With the name I used’s search feature, along with Google, and phone directories. I won’t give you her name because she doesn’t want anyone to know. (yes, I did find her.)  Some of the major keys were the obit of one of her brothers. That listed all of his children (my 1st cousins), and his surviving family members – 3 sisters. Finding that let me know that she had been married and had a new last name. Actually she’d married twice and both husbands had passed away – but now I had her current name.  ■ I was able to find her current address and I sent her a letter. Never received an letter back, nor any type of communication. The first letter was sent in January 2017. I sent a second letter to her with a self-addressed stamped envelope with a card in it for her to check one of the boxes. Box 1 – I am your mother, please contact me. Box 2 – I am your mother. Please don’t contact me.  3 – I’m not the person you’re looking for.  ■ Received the card back – She is my mother, but doesn’t want any contact with me. ■ Bummer.  But before I sent the 2nd letter out I saw that I had a new 1st-2nd cousin – related by DNA. While I was considering contacting the cousin, she took the initiative and contacted me – because she couldn’t figure out how we were related. ■ We exchanged a couple of emails. Between the two of us – and my wife – we knew it had to be one of her uncles. ■ She had three uncles – 2 had passed away, but there way one still living. ■ My cousin took a look at the pictures in my wife’s facebook account, saw one of our informal wedding pictures and boom!  I looked like either the uncle, or one of his sons at that age.  So now we’re pretty close to 100% knowing who my father is – and that he’s the uncle that’s still alive!  ■ That’s where it sits right now. I need to do a letter to him and explain who I am, etc.  ■  Getting a DNA test and having an account has led me on this journey.  It’s been great and a lot of fun. It’s been a mystery and fun to solve. ■  I would encourage anyone to do it.  You may find out that you’re related to people that you never knew, or expected to know.  ■ This has been, I think, the longest post I’ve ever written. So to all my loyal reader, (yeah, there’s only 1, I think) thanks for reading.  ■ TFB. ‘night.

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