10 April 2016

Yes, I am still alive

Since it has been so long since I have actually posted on my blog some of you might have been wondering where I have been and what I have been doing.

First I now have a new website that I have been working on. It isn't done but it is online. The URL is: http://cawildflowr.wix.com/linda-family-tree. Come check it out, feel free to leave a message. One on the nice things about using Wix for my webpage is that I am able to link this blog to my webpage so that people can read the blog right from the webpage. That means you only need to bookmark my webpage to be able to see the webpage AND my blog!

This has been a rather tough week or so for family health news. A first cousin once removed on my maternal line has been diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, she is only eleven years old. Prayers for her and the family are greatly appreciated. A GoFundMe account has been set up to help with medical expenses: Prayers For Gracie.

On the other side of my family one of my cousins received the report back from his biopsy and it is Pancreatic Cancer. This is what my mom died of so it was devastating to hear this. Not only for my cousin's sake, but because it stirred up all the memories of what we went through with my mom. Prayers are greatly appreciated for him and his family. He has a sister that has been battling cancer for a number of years and last I heard had been given a year. If that proves true this may be an extremely tough year for our family.

Another cousin on this side of the family sent me an email this past week saying that he had had a heart attack while he was out at the mall three weeks ago. He says it was a good thing it happened while he was out and about because if it had happened while he was home he probably would not have survived it since he lives alone. He is home now and hopefully follows doctors orders so we can have him around for many more years.

With all this new family health news I am making sure I am updating my list to take to my doctor so he can include it in my file. Have you written your Family Health History for your medical provider? Prevention is usually more effective than trying to repair the damage, and our doctors are better able to know what to look for if they know our family health history. Don't put it off, write that list today.

Then there are my own personal health struggles. Fortunately nothing as major as cancer or heart attacks, but they still interfere with what I want to be doing. I still have to deal daily with the limitations that my Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) and Fibromyalgia (FM) put on me. Then I am scheduled to have the rest of my teeth pulled because I had no dental insurance for six years to take care of problems when they were small, now it means pulling them and getting dentures. After that is taken care of I will go back to the Orthopedic Dr and talk about joint replacements, probably starting with my right knee. Then to top it off the eye doctor told me last week that he could probably justify doing cataract surgery. Like the Garth Brook song says "Lord I’m much too young to feel this damn old" after all I am only 57!

But hopefully when those issues are taken care of my general health will improve and I can do more of the things I love and want to be doing. No it won't cure the CFS or the FM, but with less stress on my body due to these other issues maybe the symptoms will be less severe.

In the meantime I have started playing around with Genome Mate Pro which allows you to download data from the different DNA Testing Companies and puts it into one database on your computer. This allows you to track your matches, compare matches and try to find the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) by triangulating people who share dna with each other on the same chromosome segments. It also allows you to have multiple profiles within Genome Mate Pro so that if you manage tests for yourself AND other family members you can keep track of everything within one program.

So, I am learning about how to use Genome Mate Pro, the Chrome Browser extension AncestryDNA Helper , the Chrome Browser 529andYou (used for gathering data from 23andMe matches) and will also be learning about the program DNAGedCom

I had played with the older version of Genome Mate but there were limitations on how much data could be stored. If you used the old version or have never tried this program I urge you to consider doing so. There is a Facebook group for those who might want to talk with others about their experience using it.