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 🙂 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
This matches the rumors of my grandmother being Taíno (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
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!
“Southern European” meaning the Iberian peninsula, which has Spain and Portugal. My ancestry is mostly from Spain.
The bluest part you see (above Madrid) is where most of my DNA originates, and that’s Castile and León. 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 🇺🇸 🇵🇷
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 😄 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 🙂 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! 🙂
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 🌞🌴
안녕! Bye! Ciao! …and adiós!