Note- I began writing this chapter several months ago. It's safe to assume that most "updates" were written anywhere from a week to a month between.
So, as of my last chapter- my story is at a stand still. I have a few random "leads" that I am currently awaiting results on- but there have been no major developments in my search. This leaves me at a loss for "content".
As I write this, I am awaiting the results of a test that another gentleman was kind enough to take. He is a distant relative of a woman whom I match on Ancestry as a "4th to 6th cousin". She was born in New Zealand and now lives in the US- but has a large extensive branch of family in my hometown. I have been able to trace several members of this family- many of whom would fit the criteria of someone who could indeed be my father. I don't however, expect for this individual to be identified as my father- though it is possible. My hope is that perhaps we will match in some way- possibly closer than the lady in Alaska- and we can then see if we match (all three of us) on the same chromosome. If we do, then we can ascertain that all three of us probably share a common ancestor. That would then suggest that I am on the right track, and I can further investigate this family as my tribe.
Update- The results of the Alaska lady's cousin came in and he is not a match to me. Initial thinking would be that this family is not mine...however, it is important to note that the further genetic distance (in this case- at least 4th cousins) the less chance there is for detectable DNA to be present. In other words, the more distant the relationship, the less chance of a match- even if there is a connection. An example would be that one of that persons siblings could also be tested and we would match because that person and I happened to inherit the same segment of DNA from our common ancestor. Unfortunately, DNA testing is quite expensive- not to mention that convincing an entire family to gift their DNA to a complete stranger is a task in and of itself. There are several different branches of this tree that are in Australia- so, I am still optimistic that my father is somehow connected to my Alaska match. Eventually, I will probably try to contact others from those lines. I may need to start a second job in order to pay for all of the tests I'm sending people.
I've made some new connections in the Genealogy world. Someone, who's sister is a fourth cousin match, directed me to a page on Facebook called "DNA Detectives". It consists of incredibly knowledgeable researchers and people who are basically in the same situation as myself- adoptees or people who have found out later in life that one of their parents is, in fact, not so much. It's both heartening and distressing the read people's stories that are so similar to mine. It appears to be commonplace for biological mothers to "clam up"- even when it comes to the children that they have raised from birth.
I'm tired of having to snoop into complete strangers lives and convince them to take a DNA test because my mom feels like a floozy. I'm fifty. Any man that turns out to be my father need not worry that I'm going to want anything from them other than the truth. And a DNA sample. And family medical history. And his parents names so I can research MY genealogy.
It would be so nice just to be able to talk to someone and say "Hey. My mother says she knew you in 1964 and there is a possibility you could be my biological father. Would you be willing to take a DNA test so we can find out the answer?"
That doesn't sound so difficult does it?