23andMe is distinct in that it goes beyond looking at DNA markers for ancestry, but it also finds information on genetic aspects such as risk for disease.
23andMe also works to look at DNA markers from historical DNA data as well as current aspects. However, this doesn’t mean that it doesn’t lack for problems in its own collection of information. 23andMe still relies on information that it has, and the growing collection of it. However, as it still lacks for information on many parts of the world, there are gaps in the story.
It also means I got additional and surprising results from this test.
For me this test’s surprise is the drop of West African and Sub-Saharan African, and the higher amount of Native American. While in part II we learned about my native relative, this new data is surprising, but I have a theory….well two.
My first theory is that we had a relative in the 1700 to 1800s that was from somewhere like Spain or Portugal, which means that they were close to Moorish rule of the area. Meaning they were also part middle eastern and African.
My other theory is that someone was a slave, and forced into a relationship with someone in my family. This part is a horrific reality of colonialism, the slave trade, and other facts of the white American past. I am proud of having a part of this in my existence, I am appalled at the potential reasons that lead to this.
I hope to have more insight on this when I get my parents to take the DNA tests, to see which branch this has more of a match to. My suspicion is my father’s side as they have a little more getting around, and a longer time in the United States over my mother’s side. Yet, I may be surprised even further. Stay tuned!
For a historical understanding of this 23andMe offers a timeline understanding of where what relative came into the picture. Which also adds some scientific backup to my paper trail.
However, and here is the caveat, the information and details have different levels of certainty available for the test. When I adjust from 50% certainty to 90% certainty then I see where there are holes in the research. The reasons of which are that these details are ever changing and more and more data will increase our understanding of these elements.
More on this in Part IV