Back in the early months of the year I started getting messages from various people that I needed to connect with my Native American ancestors because they were going to play an important role in the next phase of my work. The first couple times someone passed this on I just smiled, nodded and said I would take it under advisement. I did not let on that this was a sensitive subject for me, owing to the disappearance of my father when I was 3 and how those ancestors had completely rebuffed me in my teens when I first attempted to reach out to them. After all, the people were just trying to be helpful and transmit what they had received. And those transmissions kept coming, so by midsummer I finally broke down and got one of those DNA testing kits. If I was going to get anywhere in untangling my ancestral line I’d need something concrete to bring the tribal authorities and right now all I had were the poorly remembered stories of my father. Even the names of my grandparents were hidden from me.
Well, I finally got the results back and it turns out I am 99.4% European. The numbers break down as follows:
13.1% French & German
0.4% West Asian & North African
And the rest was a mix of “Broadly Northern European” and “Broadly Southern European,” whatever that means, plus I have less Neanderthal variants than 64% of the people tested.
I had them run their additional medical test and I don’t have any of the genetic conditions Native Americans are commonly predisposed to and my paternal haplogroup came out of Africa less than 10,000 years ago, too late for the Bering Land Bridge. All of which strongly suggests that those stories I was raised with about being Blackfoot were false. Either that, or my Native ancestors are doing their damndest to conceal their genetic contribution.
Now, these tests aren’t perfect and they apparently have trouble identifying Native Americans because there isn’t a large enough pool of contributors … or so some websites claim. I’m going to have myself tested again through another company and see if they can turn anything up, but at this point I kind of feel like I’ve reached a dead end with this. Annoying.