Thursday, March 5, 2009


Gene pools are funny things. You never know what you'll end up with as a result of the genetics you've been born into. My brother looked a lot like my Dad, and the older Tom got, the more he looked like Dad. My other brother looks like my father's mother's side of the family. Me? I started out looking like Dad, and now, the older I get, the more I see my mother's maternal side coming through.

It's not just hair, eye and skin colors that you get when that old gene pool flows into you. It can also be ailments, body shape, personality, talents that you receive. I seem to have inherited both parents short stature, my
father's wavy hair and blue eyes and ruddy complexion. My outgoing, friendly nature comes from Dad, too, as Mom is friendly, yet more reserved. Dad's sister was prone to heaviness below the waist, as am I,
and his father, normally very even-tempered, could be quite the opposite when provoked. I've gotten that trait from him, I guess.
My mother's dark hair and smile (as we've both been told that we 'sparkle' when we smile.) were passed to me. It seems I'm (unwillingly!) inclined toward growing non-cancerous 'things' on my skin as Mom does and her mother did. Mom is extremely cautious of things, afraid to fly, not very adventurous and not a risk taker. Though my issues are different, I have my own share of fears, the list of which seems to elongate as time ticks on.

One day I was talking with Mom, and we were lamenting about such things, and she apologized for passing along all the 'bad' things. I told her not to's just genetics. Then I laughed, because her name is Jeanette....'it's just Jeanette-ics!"

I told her that she'd passed on plenty of good things! I've become more like her, in many ways, with her gentle, quiet, spirit as I've aged. I'm still adventurous and like to have fun, but I've also become more of a homebody than I used to be. (That may be, in part, that I don't have to be running hither and yon with the activities of five children these days! ) At any rate, there are many needlework and hand-work talents that have been passed on through Mom, which I am blessed to have received. She says, 'you got it ALL, from everybody on both sides, I guess." She's referring to my ability to do a multitude of creative things from art to crafts to calligraphy, from singing to writing. These are not things I find difficult, they just seem to come naturally, though sometimes they are frustrating to 'perfect'.

Mom's Dad was in the US Coast Guard and at times was the Station Master. I'm sure he must have had hours with little to do. I would imagine that the cards with the amazing script and fancy lettering were done during some of those times. My father's Mom would sit and paint and draw with me for hours, Dad too, got that ability from her, as did his sister and at least one of her daughters. Someone in the family must have done some serious writing, Dad did a little, Mom did a little, both of my brothers and I just let the words flow from the pen. My father's father was a soloist at church, and that came along to me from him. Nothing of us is our own, it seems.

I heard yesterday that scientists have figured out how to choose what your baby will look like. If I was still in that age group, I'd say 'No thanks. I'd rather have a surprise! " I'd rather let God take the old jar of genes, shake it up and pour it out as He sees fit.

Sometimes we're blessed with good things, sometimes we aren't as fortunate. Whatever we get, we just need to do the best we can with it.
I think that's the best way to go.