DNA Matches Part 1: So I Didn't Drop In From an Alien Planet After All!
Reposted from here.
I took a DNA test to learn about my biological relatives and found out some things.
Let's start with the basics, shall we? I found out I was a human being, homo sapiens sapiens (at least mostly, I haven't compared it with the non-human samples yet.) This actually was a concern for my younger self. There were no people around who looked or acted like me in my adopted family or in the society around us, and everyone was quick to point out how weird and alien I was. So what's a kid supposed to think? Where was the evidence I hadn't fallen off a UFO? I became sensitive to attempts to "other" me or anyone else.
My questionable humanity became a sore spot in adolescence. I played D&D in my teens and I noticed this huge disconnection between myself and some of the other players. A lot of players never, ever wanted to play a human character. They despised humanity. It disgusted them. For them, the whole point of playing D&D was to explore the possibility that they were not human. At least not wholly human, safe within the confines of a RPG game.
I stubbornly insisted on only playing characters who were 100% human, which caused a certain amount of consternation among the anti-human crew. Everyone else thought I was weird for playing D&D in the first place, and they thought I was weird for how I played D&D. There was nowhere I felt at home, nowhere I felt safe.
Looking back, I realize safety was the core issue. They were normal adolescents who felt confident enough in their own identity that they could start to take on and explore other identities. I wasn't. They knew where they had come from; I did not. They were secure enough in their humanity that they could reject it, but I always had this tiny doubt that maybe I really had fallen off Witch Mountain.
Of course they would have been highly insulted if anyone had pointed this out to them at the time. Daring to be different was strictly a sign of their own courage in the face of overwhelming social conformity, not of any underlying safety net.
And for some kids it was, but not for most of them.
Just like some teens had these huge fights with their parents over reasons that seemed oh-so-important to them at the time but other people could plainly tell were mainly because they felt confident enough in their parents' unconditional love that they knew they weren't going to be kicked out of the house for it. I obsessed day and night over telling my abusive adoptive parents off, and day and night I reminded myself that I had nowhere else to go and no way to survive on my own.
I secretly seethed at both groups. It made me furious that they could get away with doing things like that because they had a safety net and I did not. I couldn't even tell other people how precarious my own safety was without potentially making the situation worse by calling attention to it.
And that was the real problem, not the other kids.
So anyway, I 'm glad to have actual confirmation that I really am a human being. But that wasn't my first thought when I saw my DNA matches. It wasn't even my hundredth or thousandth thought.
My first thought was utter and complete mindblowing shock.