I’ve always been intrigued by my physical features. Big luscious lips, high cheek bones, warm chocolate skin, brown almond-shaped eyes, small ears, elegant collar bone, long legs & limbs, curly brown hair, slender frame, athletic build. Gosh…it’s such an interesting combination.
In recent years, my curiosity has only grown. So this year, for Christmas, I took the leap and purchased a 23andMe genealogy test for myself in an effort to learn more about the melting pot that is my genetic makeup.
CLICK HERE TO TAKE THE 23ANDME TEST FOR YOURSELF!
Note: My best friend is a scientist, and she shared with me her perspective on completing these sort of tests and the potential danger in giving these companies complete access to your precious DNA. I’m only saying this because it is a serious decision that you should consider before you spit in the tube (like I did).
I wanted to share my ancestry composition on this MLK day to show that I am proud of who I am. Honored to be in a country that my ancestors endured through pain and trials to build. Proud of the men and women of all races who have taken their stands for justice, freedom and equality. Who have made a positive difference in the world we now live in.
First - I was pleasantly surprised when my results stated that I am 100% Anastasia (Wooo…that was a close call. Glad I finally have that in writing).
I am also…
82% West African
12% European (British & Irish)
2% East Asian & Native American
<1% South Asian
If I’m honest, my first response to seeing my results was pure shock. I was SHOCKED that I was over 82% West African. I actually thought “Wow. What am I doing HERE then?”
I was also shocked that I am more European than Native American! 12%?! That’s a lot!
After my initial shock came the bittersweet realization that the area of West Africa my ancestors are from also was a huge target in the slave trade…which it answered my initial question “What am I doing here?”
I know these percentages are just numbers on a screen. But if I am honest with myself, they are more than that to me. They begin to tell a story that has been untold to me for so long. I picture each of my ancestors at my age, 28, and wonder what life they had lived in their generation. What joy they had, what trials they endured, what their hopes and dreams were. And if, in some way, I am living them out in my life – all these generations later.
I don’t want to dwell in the past. Not at all. But I do want to use the past as motivation, and continue to look forward. I want to continually dedicate my hands, my voice and my heart to the labor of building an ever brighter, fuller future for the generations of loved ones to follow.
No matter where in the world they will one day call home.