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A few years ago I spit into a tube and sent the sample to a lab in Provo.  Within a few weeks I received the results and there was only one surprise.  It said a fifth of my DNA was Scandinavian (which really doesn’t pinpoint much when you consider it’s a big region).

I’m not aware of Scandinavian ancestry in my family.  The results were otherwise what I already knew.  My people came from Ireland, Germany and Scotland.  A year later an update arrived.  Scandinavia was out and the Irish share had grown to 50 percent.  I’m told this happens as comparisons are made with relatives who are also sharing their DNA.  It creates a better mapping system. 

Germany remains but is now a lower percentage in exchange for a larger Scottish block.  So much for DNA being settled science.

A few weeks ago I received another update.  Scandinavia is back, accounting for 4 percent of my reading.  Germany remains but is now a lower percentage in exchange for a larger Scottish block.  So much for DNA being settled science.

There have also been some surprises.  In 1998 I was the Best Man at the wedding of a friend.  His wife is very nice and they’re wonderful people.  Twenty years after the wedding I learned she was a 3rd cousin.  We haven’t yet found the connection.  There was a time when one of my great-grandfathers lived on a farm not far from where she grew up.  It’s a theory but I’ve no proof.  She hasn’t responded with any theories of her own.  This might be a touchy subject.

Meanwhile, a complete stranger wrote me and explained we’re closely related.  Again, I haven’t found a connection.  I’ve got a half-brother I’ve never met.  He was much older and I’m not sure he’s still among the living.  He never had an interest in meeting me and I respected his decision.

So, this is where I’m left with DNA testing.  I’m not sentimental.  People can share a bloodline and not be close.  Meanwhile, I’ve got some friends who are closer than family.  And I’m fine.