Lately I have been focusing on the DNA relatives that have similar surnames to those already connected to the family trees. It takes time to sift through dates, names and geographic locations to rekindle progress on certain branches.
Those that I have been successful in attaining multiple connections to genetic relatives, who also happen to have similar family trees that match, are being used collectively to see the most recent common ancestor many of them share with the adoptee.
There are at least three cases where we have reached a point where contacting actual people to inquire about our possible connection, that there has manifested a palatable apprehension coming from these searchers. Still on other family trees the progress has slowed down to the individual level; where each step requires documentation to substantiate reality.
It is hard to sometimes measure the hope out there. Some of my searchers have become busy with other distractions in their lives. Some quietly contemplate how much proof they will need to reach out to potential family, while others just do their best to balance search with every day life; not placing all their eggs in one basket.
I have been quietly plodding along, grinding through family trees. Yet on my own home front I have been contacting by close and distant relatives I did not expect to hear from. One has shared a new branch to my own paternal side of my birth family. I have taken their progress and attached it to mine to give them some perspective and possibilities to establish their maternal grand-father’s birth family. He was told as a youngster that his birth father died in a car crash. However, his daughter and son-in-law had his Y-DNA tested at Family Tree DNA and found many similar surnames that match my paternal line.
He was provided with this truth about two years ago. I can only hope it gave him some peace of mind. He had guessed long ago that his mother was just too ashamed to tell him the truth about an extramarital affair. He died soon after never truly knowing who his actual birth father was. Now his daughter and her husband search for the truth.
This could be the fourth orphan/adoptee mystery to be potentially resolved in my family tree. One would have thought it would have ended with my own discovery of my birth parents, but this story seems never ending throughout the generations.
I still work with my maternal cousin where we only match up exactly at the maternal Full Sequence mitochondrial level. Which basically means between fifteen and thirty generations possibly separate us. I have made it to my forth great-grandmother. However, I have been unable to establish definitive DNA proof of her connection to other relatives. Her surname frequently shows up in distant relatives, but I am concerned that it may require much more than online documentation has yet to offer to prove it beyond a doubt.
I have taken her maternal line several generations further back and fleshed out over a thousand family members to try and connect to someone somewhere, but only one family tree even comes close to mine at that distance and theirs is poorly documented.
No matter where we start to find the truth eventually we must stop and be satisfied with the progress that we’ve made. That does not suggest we throw in the towel, but it does seem to be a common theme for all genealogists and adoptees alike. It is not dissimilar to any analogy we can compare with a long duration of almost boredom, followed by shear moments of exhilaration.
It is hard to compare those outside of the adoptee and birth relative search just how poignant and important our truth is worth. Dozens of books I have read seem evident enough in their ability to sooth the wounds of an adoptees desire to be amongst people who know their situation like no one else. Although camaraderie just falls short of the actual goal, but has some level of satisfaction at the injustice thrust upon us.