My DNA and me.

Often times the best things we find in life are not the things we are searching for. Such was my experience when I went searching for my ancestry.

In my last video blog I made a point about my place in life being attributed to hard work rather than luck. While I stand by that wholeheartedly, there is one area I consider myself extremely lucky… my family.

Me and my big sister Kelsey – a beautiful person inside and out.

My parents went to great lengths to have my sister and I using a sperm donor. I have always felt loved and supported in every endeavor I have pursued. I grew up with the most amazing sister anyone could ask for. We bickered, we fought, we didn’t share our toys – we did all the ornery things sisters should do. In the end we became best friends.

One year ago I was having a drink with a buddy who had just received his results from a website called 23andme. It broke down his ancestry into a very detailed chart. Although I knew I was “white”, I wanted to know what shade! So I submitted my DNA to discover my ancestry.

The very first selfie I ever took with my brother Jason.

To my surprise I found a brother! This brother could have been absolutely anyone, and any type of person. But when we finally met we had an instant connection. I don’t believe in fate, or in things happening “for a reason”, but I can say that our discovery of one another came at the most auspicious time for us both. We were going through major life changes, and to find a new sibling was like finding a complete stranger who you could confide in without judgement. I often joke that whatever he thinks of me, he can’t “un-sister” me!

And with the addition of a brother came 3 more little relatives. I am a self proclaimed “Super-Aunt”! I now have 3 nieces and 3 nephews. And I’m just the crazy gypsy Aunt living in her teardrop trailer who drops by every once in awhile! I believe it is my solemn duty to instill a sense of wonder, imagination, and adventure in each of these little buggers.mld_4357akids

When 23andme heard our story, they were moved and wanted to document it. We were both honored to share our story, and now I am happy to introduce…

Mandy & Jason’s 23andme Story:

Sharing our story with the film crew was a fun experience! Here are some behind the scenes photos:

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24 Comments on “My DNA and me.

  1. I know how it feels to find family. I never had my dad in my life growing up but found when I was in my 20’s that I have 2 half sisters. I grew up with 3 brothers and I never had another girl to talk to other than my mother. This video really hit home with me so thank you for sharing your story Mandy. You are truly an inspiration to me.

  2. Beautiful story Mandy! I know a bit of what you’re feeling. My birthson and I were reunited 14 years ago, when he was 31. He got to meet four full-blooded siblings! I love how their relationships have blossomed. Such a gift in our lives. Congratulations on finding your brother, and for expanding your family in such a beautiful, meaningful way!

  3. Wow, what a cool story!! I can just see the joy in your eyes, Mandy, as you discover and explore such an amazing surprise “gift” in your life. A beautiful thing to witness, indeed. Thank you for sharing it, for I know it will bless many of your readers…myself included.

  4. Yay!! Oh, I love a good reunion story!!… I placed my son up for adoption when he was born, because his biodad was abusive to me (I had just turned 17) & I didn’t want him to grow up in that cycle of abuse. I was always at peace with my decision & I never looked back. I knew in my heart if he was anything like me, he’d want to know who I was someday. I carried his baby pic around in my wallet & shared my story as I saw fit, if anyone needed to hear it… Twenty four years later, I got the letter, “Hello, my name is Mike, I am your son…” & We have been GREAT friends ever since then. Ten years now. It’s awesome. Genetics is such an amazing thing!

    • Thanks!… It truly has been beautiful! It’s a real life, feel good story.

  5. Love the video….thank you for sharing your story and life with the entire world.

  6. Ok, now you’ve made me cry. It’s an amazing story. Thank you for sharing.

  7. I tried yesterday to “follow” your blog When I just received an email from you to confirm it wouldn’t let me. Is that because I’m not using my own computer but my daughter’s. Could it be because the computer has been set not to allow me join blogs,or rather follow blogs?

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