Hand-Me-Down Genes

I have studied genealogy for some 20 years now. Gone are the days of sitting in small town library attics or ordering microfiche from the LDS Church. With the advancement of technologies, climbing your family tree can be done in a fraction of the time it used to and at considerably less expense. Anyone who digs through their family history deep enough, is bound to find at least one notable ancestor. I’ve traced my lineage back several hundred years and found many surprises.

One of my ancestors was in the Salem witch trials. Sarah Towne Cloyce, she was the only survivor of three sisters who were tried for witchcraft. Later, a movie was made about her and her narrow escape from the gallows. Reading the transcripts from the trials, I will have to say, she was quite the debater, (good thing for me). It has been estimated that from her, came over ten thousand descendants. Ten thousand! According to history, in all of them, there were none born with dwarfism …until now.

Approximately 80% of persons born with dwarfism are born to average stature parents. They call this a “spontaneous gene mutation”, rather ugly words for something so amazing. Once the gene has mutated, it can be passed on to the next generation. Given that I will someday have grand children, and the lineage continues, there will continue to be LPs in my family for a long time.

I remember thinking of that shortly after Jax was born. How cool is that? Hundreds of years from now, someone could be studying our family history and find him. The first of many, the point in time where it all began! I can’t help but wonder if that person will be a Little Person too, or if it will be a long forgotten memory. I guess it just depends on the genes and who gets the hand-me-downs…

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