Disclaimer: Living DNA invited me to try out one of their DNA kits to find out more about my ancestral DNA.
For the longest time, I have been incredibly curious about my bloodline, and the path my ancestral DNA has taken in order to get to me. My heritage has always been a bit of a grey area due to there being adoption on one side of the family.
I have a huge interest in family trees (Who Do You Think You Are is a MUST watch for me), but because of my broken family history, I don’t think that this particular strand of genealogy would yield many results.
But DNA testing would be able to provide me with so much information – of which nothing could be refuted or denied because DNA is the ultimate data source. DNA is truth.
About three months ago Living DNA reached out to me to see if I would be interested in trying their Ancestral DNA test so that I could find out more about my ancestral history.
Within a few days, a package containing a test tube and cotton swab arrived at my door and not long after reading the enclosed instructions I was whizzing the swab around the inside of my gums for 40 seconds.
I sent the swab back that same day and waited. I knew that the results would take a couple of months to process and analyse – Living DNA were excellent at keeping me updated with their progress via the online portal you register your kit with.
They indicated that the results would be ready around the middle of February. So imagine my surprise a couple of days ago when I was told that the analysis had been completed and my results were available to view online.
Living DNA – Seeing the Results
I have to admit that I felt quite nervous about logging on to the online portal to view my results. Nervous, but excited too. What would I find out about myself? I already knew that the results would position Ireland up high in the results as my mum is Irish, but beyond that was absolutely anyone’s guess.
This is me (in map form):
The results go back ten generations and is across both my mother and father’s line. My ancestry is 84.6% from Great Britain and Ireland, and the remaining 15.4% is Germanic. While the results couldn’t drill right down into the specific regions that make up that 15% Living DNA tells me that the whole Germanic region is classed as Germany, Denmark and Sweden.
Living DNA was then able to show me a map detailing geographical locations and concentration levels of my common ancestor’s descendants from various points in history. The map below shows this information for approximately 500 years ago.
Living DNA – The Motherline
As part of their DNA analysis Living DNA can trace your direct maternal heritage, also known as your motherline. This is mitochondrial DNA that is passed down from mother to child. Using the mitochondrial DNA Living DNA are able to trace your direct maternal line back to around 200,000 years ago. Living DNA can analyse the fatherline too (the y-DNA), to discover paternal ancestry however this is only available to males as only they carry the y chromosome.
The map above shows the geographic regions associated with my specific maternal line (which is H3 apparently). It’s incredible to think that this specific line can be found today in Wales, Iceland, Armenia, North Africa, Belarus, Slovakia among many others.
When I next see my mum I will be sure to show her this map – I know she will find it so interesting to see where her motherline can be found!
I have really enjoyed the whole process to find out more about my ancestral DNA – and the results that came back from Living DNA have been incredibly interesting. It’s been good to finally add some information to what were once grey areas in my ancestral DNA – information that I most likely would not have been able to find out through standard Geanology methods in the past.
I have come away from this feeling a bit more grounded, more aware of who I am, where I come from and, maybe, what makes me who I am.
Pin me for later: