I Took An Ancestry DNA Test And Frankly, I'm Shook

I Took An Ancestry DNA Test And Frankly, I'm Shook

Despite the bandwagon-y culture and privacy concerns, DNA tests give you a bigger sense of who you are.

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Ladies and gentlemen, I regret to inform you that I have given in to the hype: that I took an AncestryDNA test.

But to be fair, it was a Christmas gift. And as someone who has a highly ambiguous ethnic background (and practically the only person in my family who has yet to submit one), I couldn't help but resist finding out about my ancestry.

Before I go on, I should mention why such tests are controversial. There have been conspiracies and allegations in the past that some of the DNA kits' suppliers send your DNA to the federal government. Moreover, there have been some criticism over the accuracy of tests; some users reported that different kits from 23andme, Ancestry, and others have yielded different results.

Prior to taking the test, I always thought of myself to be half-Chinese, a quarter Irish, and then 10 percent or so of Italian and Swiss. But according to the Ancestry DNA test, I was 48% Chinese, 19% Italian, 19% Irish, 9% French, 3% Vietnamese, and 2% Greek.

To put it simply, I was shook.

When I submitted my test, I was afraid that I was going to find out that I wasn't going to be an ethnicity that I've known myself to be for so long. Maybe because I've been watching too many YouTube reactions to peoples' test, but also due to the fact that my maternal grandfather was adopted by mainland Chinese; he was (he's no longer alive) purportedly to be from Taiwan or further southeast in Asia.

That could explain the Vietnamese part, but what's also was shocking was the French part too. This might be attributed to my Swiss heritage, but one of the classes I'm taking this winter is Irish history, which includes many instances of the French aiding the Irish in the 15th century. Needless to say, I was having such an "a-ha" moment here.

So, if you were to ask me about how I feel about DNA tests, I would say give it a try if you're feeling up to it. In terms of accuracy, my results were for the most part were spot-on; I even found some of my cousins from Oregon as DNA matches who also took the test.

DNA tests are a superb way to find out more about yourself, especially if you're ethnically ambiguous like I am. I now have a better understanding of who I am as a person and have found a new pride in my heritage. Though the privacy and inaccuracy concerns are of valid worry, this should not discourage someone who wants answers on who they are.

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It's Time To Thank Your First Roommate

Not the horror story kind of roommate, but the one that was truly awesome.
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Nostalgic feelings have recently caused me to reflect back on my freshman year of college. No other year of my life has been filled with more ups and downs, and highs and lows, than freshman year. Throughout all of the madness, one factor remained constant: my roommate. It is time to thank her for everything. These are only a few of the many reasons to do so, and this goes for roommates everywhere.

You have been through all the college "firsts" together.

If you think about it, your roommate was there through all of your first college experiences. The first day of orientation, wishing you luck on the first days of classes, the first night out, etc. That is something that can never be changed. You will always look back and think, "I remember my first day of college with ____."

You were even each other's first real college friend.

You were even each other's first real college friend.

Months before move-in day, you were already planning out what freshman year would be like. Whether you previously knew each other, met on Facebook, or arranged to meet in person before making any decisions, you made your first real college friend during that process.

SEE ALSO: 18 Signs You're A Little Too Comfortable With Your Best Friends

The transition from high school to college is not easy, but somehow you made it out on the other side.

It is no secret that transitioning from high school to college is difficult. No matter how excited you were to get away from home, reality hit at some point. Although some people are better at adjusting than others, at the times when you were not, your roommate was there to listen. You helped each other out, and made it through together.

Late night talks were never more real.

Remember the first week when we stayed up talking until 2:00 a.m. every night? Late night talks will never be more real than they were freshman year. There was so much to plan for, figure out, and hope for. Your roommate talked, listened, laughed, and cried right there with you until one of you stopped responding because sleep took over.

You saw each other at your absolute lowest.

It was difficult being away from home. It hurt watching relationships end and losing touch with your hometown friends. It was stressful trying to get in the swing of college level classes. Despite all of the above, your roommate saw, listened, and strengthened you.

...but you also saw each other during your highest highs.

After seeing each other during the lows, seeing each other during the highs was such a great feeling. Getting involved on campus, making new friends, and succeeding in classes are only a few of the many ways you have watched each other grow.

There was so much time to bond before the stresses of college would later take over.

Freshman year was not "easy," but looking back on it, it was more manageable than you thought at the time. College only gets busier the more the years go on, which means less free time. Freshman year you went to lunch, dinner, the gym, class, events, and everything else possible together. You had the chance to be each other's go-to before it got tough.

No matter what, you always bounced back to being inseparable.

Phases of not talking or seeing each other because of business and stress would come and go. Even though you physically grew apart, you did not grow apart as friends. When one of you was in a funk, as soon as it was over, you bounced right back. You and your freshman roommate were inseparable.

The "remember that one time, freshman year..." stories never end.

Looking back on freshman year together is one of my favorite times. There are so many stories you have made, which at the time seemed so small, that bring the biggest laughs today. You will always have those stories to share together.

SEE ALSO: 15 Things You Say To Your Roommates Before Going Out

The unspoken rule that no matter how far apart you grow, you are always there for each other.

It is sad to look back and realize everything that has changed since your freshman year days. You started college with a clean slate, and all you really had was each other. Even though you went separate ways, there is an unspoken rule that you are still always there for each other.

Your old dorm room is now filled with two freshmen trying to make it through their first year. They will never know all the memories that you made in that room, and how it used to be your home. You can only hope that they will have the relationship you had together to reflect on in the years to come.


Cover Image Credit: Katie Ward

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Life Gets Us Down But There Is A Light At The End Of The Tunnel

Head up, kid.

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In a split second, someone's world could be turned upside down with no heads up of what is coming. People wonder why him or her? What did they do to deserve this? No one ever does anything to deserve the amount of pain they are put through. It makes others think, "that could be me."

Over the years, I have heard heartbreaking stories of people in car accidents or playing a sport they love. Young people that have a whole life ahead of them. One small bad decision could lead to the worst outcome, or no bad decision was made but fate put them in the worst place.

I have been so upset knowing that people that I love are in so much pain because their loved one has been hurt or may not be with us anymore. It makes me think: Nobody knows what is going to happen in five minutes or even thirty seconds. The future is so mysterious.

Even in the darkest moments, there is happiness. Somewhere deep down there is a light at the end of the tunnel that is soon to come. We cannot dwell on the negatives or the past that has not been perfect, but look toward the positive, better ending we know is there.

Think about the past moments that have brought so much joy to our lives, not the present that makes us sad and hopeless at times. Be appreciative of the life you have been given. Your small problems may not compare to what someone else and his or her family is going through at the moment. Take the small things, throw them away, and look at the bigger and brighter picture.

This is hard for me to do, but there are people looking for hope and praying for good news to come. I know no issue I have is nearly as serious as that. I have channeled my negative energy into thinking and praying for those that I know are hurting for something good to ease their pain.

If you need someone to think about and pray for:

Jared Antle is a sophomore at James Madison University and was hit by a car as he was trying to get into a vehicle on August 24, 2018. He is suffering from severe brain trauma and is currently at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta.

Jared's YouTube

Jared's Facebook

Jared's GoFundMe

Shay Wood is a senior at Hamden-Sydney College and was involved in a car accident on February 22, 2019, and is currently recovering from several serious injuries.

Shay on caringbridge.org

The Burgett family lost their son in 2012 as he was involved in a car accident and a day does not go by that I do not think about Ian and his family.

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