Where I’m From (DNA Results)

23 and Me is a company that does DNA testing for ancestry composition. Growing up, there were a lot of family rumors about my maternal grandmother being a Native of the Caribbean, but it was just that– rumors. On my own, away from family at age 16, I couldn’t find anyone who could confirm to me if the rumors were true.

And I wanted to know for sure.

All my life, people have asked me, “Are you Chinese??” And eventually I got to thinking… Maybe I am Chinese… Or Native? So a few years ago, I did 23 and Me.

I want to share the results with you because I think ancestry is neat πŸ™‚ I know some of you are also tracing your family history, and it’s always so interesting to see! These are in order of lowest percentage to highest.


16.6% Native American

The Americas & the Caribbean

This matches the rumors of my grandmother being TaΓ­no (Puerto Rican indigenous people), however, the most highlighted part is the Americas. Like… all of the Americas. From Greenland to Argentina.

Not super helpful, because it doesn’t narrow it down one bit. But I imagine there was some truth to my family rumors. I’ll just never know if I came from a specific tribe of indigenous people, but that’s okay. I’m happy to know. I’m not in it for scholarships or whatever. Just happy to know!


17% Sub-Saharan African + North African

a little more specific

I am 14.5% Sub-Saharan African and 2.5% North African, and that makes 17% of my DNA. You can see the color-coded map, with the dots showing the specific regions.

I was really happy with this part of my ancestry results, because it is so specific. It doesn’t just highlight the entire African continent, it actually points to various places with percentages for each. Really cool!


64.8% Spaniard

zoomed out to show the color codes

“Southern European” meaning the Iberian peninsula, which has Spain and Portugal. My ancestry is mostly from Spain.

zoomed in
I am mostly from the bluest part,
which is Castile and LeΓ³n

The bluest part you see (above Madrid) is where most of my DNA originates, and that’s Castile and LeΓ³n. There is also a lot from the Canary Islands (not pictured) which are islands located off the west coast of North Africa, near Morocco and Western Sahara.

I was interested to see Ashkenazi Jewish. Though a tiny percent (0.4%) I have purchased a book to learn more about the Jews that were in Spain. Spoiler alert: not… treated… very… well…


That’s it! Put it all together and:

I’m Puerto Rican πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ πŸ‡΅πŸ‡·

I was surprised to see pretty much zero DNA from the Far East, only because so many people have asked me throughout my life if I’m Chinese πŸ˜„ But I’m not even close, it seems. Mostly Spanish.

Born in Puerto Rico, I pretty much figured this would be my results, though I would never have guessed the percentages. The Spanish (and other Europeans) came to the Caribbean with African slaves, then mixed with the Natives already in the Caribbean. I remember that from elementary school history in Puerto Rico πŸ™‚ So, I already knew.

That’s why Puerto Ricans can look so diverse. You’ll see blond, blue-eyed Puerto Ricans on the island, as well as black Puerto Ricans, Native Puerto Ricans, and also many like me– a mix of pale skin with dark eyes and dark hair. We are an eclectic mix of various peoples! πŸ™‚

Okay, I’ll answer the questions everyone asks me when they find out I’m Puerto Rican: No, I’ve never been to New York. I’m Puerto Rican from the island, then came to Florida as a kid. Uh, yes, I came legally. No, I don’t like J-Lo. Yes, I speak Spanish. No, I’m not a fan of AOC. No, please don’t call me BIPOC, POC, Latinx, or any word invented in the US. No, whatever you’re doing with Puerto Rican stuff is not appropriation. Yes, I miss parts of my culture. Yes, I like Ricky Martin and Benicio del Toro 😁

Yes, the beaches are beautiful 🌞🌴

μ•ˆλ…•! Bye! Ciao! …and adiΓ³s!

jarilissima

Questions? I’m very direct and hard to offend πŸ™‚
Unless asked about J-Lo again… πŸ˜…

46 comments

  1. Yari, praise God for you!!!! God has truly made you unique! Beautiful, love it! So, the first time I ever heard Ricky Martin was 1998, “Cup of Life” I was at the Hard Rock Cafe in Barcelona, at that point in life I had NEVER experienced anything like that!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re so kind, thank you πŸ₯° And oh, Ricky Martin was really big around 1998, starting to make English music too. That must have been quite the experience! If I remember correctly there was a big soccer team from Barcelona at that time?

      It’s nice that you got to travel, and hopefully we’ll all be able to travel again soon πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This is SO interesting! And I just love your humor throughout. πŸ™‚ Our daughter is a geneticist and has done some very fascinating work. It’s amazing how our genome tells us everything about who we are. God is something else! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

      • Microbiology is very fascinating. There are so many ways that our genetics can help us. Pharmacogenetics can tell how each person’s body reacts to medicines, for instance. She tested Aaron for that. She works for MD Anderson now. Have a good night, Yari.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I did my test with Ancestry. Like you, I had confirmation of some things and revealed mysteries of others. Lots of Catalan, 6% native American, about 20 from Africa, a bit of Scots…and then the real mystery – the Scandinavian and the middle eastern. It’s great to know that you are so much a part of the Family of Man.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Cool ancestry! I had mine done a couple years ago. I’m a mix of Scottish, German European (mostly Czech), Swedish, and English. My hubby has a lot of Spanish, French and Italian.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you for sharing this with us. ❀️Really special to hear how your “back” story. I agree, learning about our heritage and where our ancestors are from is very interesting. I’ve never done the DNA test, but cherish some really old family stories, like the one of your grandmother. As a little girl, if I behaved in a way that wasn’t proper my aunt would say, “Is that the way the daughter of an Irish princess would act?! You know our ancestor was an Irish princess and you need to behave.” I still smile when I think of it. I doubt it’s truth, but enjoy the memory. God bless ❀️

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aww That is absolutely sweet ❀️ Your aunt sounds like a lovely person! And I’m glad you enjoyed the post πŸ™‚ Thanks for sharing your own story and God bless you too, my friend!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. How very interesting to see this! And I imagine it must’ve been nice for you to learn that too. I can definitely understand why people make the Chinese assumption. I thought so too from the photos you’ve shared.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was certainly interesting πŸ™‚ I was really excited while waiting for the results, like waiting for Christmas morning! It was good to know, just to feel more of a sense of connection to the wider world and history.

      And totally understandable, I get that a lot! Haha 😊 And from your photos I would guess some Asian background? Or maybe you’re like me and have none at all? πŸ€”

      Liked by 1 person

  7. So cool! Since childhood I’ve always thought I was 3/4 Swedish and 1/4 Danish (based on the fact that my dad’s parents and my mom’s mom were all Swedish and my mom’s dad was Danish) but now that DNA testing has become popular, I realize that I’m probably a lot of other things too. It would be interesting to find out. What amazes me is that siblings can have different percentages of DNA from places, even though they have the same parents. I guess that’s why some siblings look more like one side of the family than a the other ?πŸ€” Fascinating post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, I thought you must have done the DNA already, since you like researching family history. You should consider it, it’s cool πŸ™‚

      So glad you enjoyed this post πŸ™‚ And I didn’t know that about siblings, that’s cool!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. An interesting test πŸ™‚ May I ask do you feel offended when being mistook as Chinese? Personally, I am annoyed when strangers jump to my face and shout “ni hao”. Firstly, it’s rude. Secondly, China is not the only country in Asia *eyes rolling*.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Not at all. Chinese is not a derogatory term, so I’m not offended if someone assumes I am.

      Most people ask sincerely, not mockingly, so it’s okay. Shouting in my face “ni hao” would be rude, but thankfully that has never happened!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. That’s really interesting. I’ve never done one of those DNA tests myself. The part where you mentioned looking Asian sounded familiar, though. There are some groups of Native Americans who seem to have an almost Asian look. I’m not very good at these things myself, but I used to work with a Navajo girl, and other people guessed that she was Asian. I don’t know if that could be a factor here, but I suppose it’s possible.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I am glad you found your DNA testing helpful in identifying your past. Several years ago I was given a DNA testing kit as a gift. I had no interest in my DNA. My sister did her DNA testing and results indicated the usual β€œsuspects”: Africa, Europe, and the Americas. Not interesting since we already know that for thousands of years huge populations of were constantly on the move. Since I do not have distinct ethnic features, I have no curiosity. I would like to know who my most recent generations in Puerto Rico were. That is feasible but more expensive.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Africa, Europe, and the Americas– yeah, basically πŸ™‚ For me the curiosity was mostly because people kept seeing Asian features in me, so I wanted to know. But other than that, it really hasn’t brought me closer to my family or culture of origin. I’m pretty Americanized, in the classic not modern sense.

      I found a website called Family Search (org) that was free to use and I found old documents from Puerto Rico, so that might be helpful to you while saving money. You can dip your toes in family history without spending a ton of money right away. I hope you find that resource helpful πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to Lou Carreras Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s