I watched both seasons of Who Do You Think You Are?, which chronicles the journeys that celebrities take while tracking down their family histories. One thing that stuck with me is that so often, they would find parallels in their ancestors’ lives and their own. That made me think about how a certain trait can get passed down many generations, not necessarily just genetically, but behaviorally. After all, the environment you grow up in greatly affects the environment you will create as a parent and I believe that a lot of those childhood influences stay with you for life.
Whether it’s an adventurous spirit or a strong foundation in faith, it’s more than just a genetic component. It’s pretty cool how much of ourselves we can see in our pasts. It makes me think of what imprint I will leave for future generations of my family. I’m sure a certain stubbornness and inquisitiveness will shine through, and hopefully a fair share of entrepreneurialism or at least enterprising efforts as well! I wonder if my willingness to be the exception and stand out will be shared over generations. I am confident that education will be strong in our family. I certainly expect post-graduate degrees!
I’d like to see what I can find out about my own ancestry and if there are hints about the type of people I came from. I don’t know the quality of the records in China, since a lot was probably lost or destroyed over the years, but I can start with what my parents and grandparents remember. It would be nice to know what I came from. Were my ancient relatives scholars or farmers? Were they poor or well-to-do? Could I even have a connection to a historical figure or royalty? Who knows! I’m curious to find out.
I’d also be interested in doing a DNA test someday, to show me a breakdown of my ethnic heritage. As far as I know, I’m pretty much all Chinese, though part of that originates from the Mongols. That’s pretty normal in Northern China, since the Mongols invaded back in the day and became the new “Chinese.” Who knows, maybe some Mongolian ancestry was also mixed with Russian or Eastern European? There’s just a wealth of information that I am interested in finding out and I hope that future generations are just as interested as well.