Saturday, December 2, 2017

The Ancestry DNA Test - Spitting In A Funnel - Part 1

For those who wonder what it would be like to have their DNA tested through one of the many companies, I thought I would walk you through my experience and what to expect. Perhaps you'll feel comfortable enough to take the plunge after reading my experience.

Arriving in a brown, padded manila envelope, the box you see in the photo was my first step to discovering my nationalities. Upon opening the small box (and they seal it well), the photo displays exactly what I saw - instruction fold-out, another sealed container holding my plastic vile with tiny funny attached, and a return-mail box (the postage is included).


I chose to go through Ancestry.com for several reasons - none that are science related.

  • I widely use Ancestry.com's databases with my genealogy research
  • I'm hooked on "Finding Your Roots" with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and they use Ancestry
  • They had a huge price reduction on CyberMonday and I had an additional $14 off - how can I not take advantage of that?
I already have an account with Ancestry, so it was quite simple to register my kit with them. I have been assigned a 9 digit/letter code which the lab will use to identify me and I will use to access my results.

They asked me not to eat, drink, smoke, etc., 30 minutes before the test, so I just performed this step first thing in the morning. It was amazing how many people felt that I needed to take it 10 notches higher with ridiculous antics and threats of "but it won't work if....." None of them are geneticists, so I'm not worried. You just spit in the funnel until the saliva reaches or exceeds the "wavy line". It is interesting how quickly your mouth can go dry when you suddenly have to spit.

Next, I removed the tiny funnel, screwed on another small capped vile which released a blue solution to stabilize my DNA, shook it for 5 seconds, left the cap on, placed the vile in a plastic envelope, and sealed it. I then placed it in the mailing box, sealed it, and at present, it's ready to go.

It was not difficult and all performed while snuggled in bed, listening to the coffee pot perk in the background. The instructions also give the warning that my results may take 6 - 8 weeks and I will access them online through my account. That sounds easy enough to me.

What do I expect? I expect a surprise, though that may not happen.

I expect to see the results heavy on the Ireland/Scotland/Wales and England. I expect the regions around Germany, Netherlands, Luxembourg, and Belgium to be smelling like a rose, and if not, I may have my story. (I will tell you about that when the results come in).

And as I checked the box that I would like to see others genetically related to me (you can opt out of this), I would not be surprised if there is a surprise in that area as well.

I have absolutely no proof what I expect to discover, other than my paternal family's whisperings when they felt I was not listening, and the gut feelings of a young child that I've carried through life. It has stuck with me to a point in time that we can now discover secrets through affordable DNA testing.

We'll see. Stay tuned for Part 2.

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