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Sometimes your roots call you home

The last few months I have tried to take a different approach with my weekly column. Trying not to talk too much about myself, I have maintained speaking about topics in Jessamine County and issues going on with City of Nicholasville, City of Wilmore and topics at the Jessamine County Fiscal Court meetings.

I have also thrown in a fair share of topics pertaining to holiday events around town.

However, I found out some news recently about my heritage that was just too exciting not to share with you.

Since moving to Kentucky almost two years ago, I would be lying if I said I didn’t struggle at times trying to understand how we got here and what made us choose this state over all the others.

To be honest, Kentucky was not ever a state I thought about while growing up on the West Coast. What some may label a “flyover” state, I often wondered what compelled me and my husband to jump on a plane, fly to Kentucky and in a matter of four days, decide to uproot the entire life we knew back home and move without ever looking back.

I came across someone in Keene who had a similar story about not completely understanding why when he moved from Texas, Kentucky was where he decided to land having also been like me not knowing anyone and having no friends or family in the Bluegrass state. He made a comment to me when we met about how he found out later he had roots in Kentucky and “his roots had called him home.”

Always interested in ancestry, it had been many years since I had logged into Ancestory.com and worked on my family tree — but what that gentleman said to me got me thinking.

One day in October I decided to log back into the site and see if just maybe my roots had possibly called me home and I just didn’t know it yet.

To my surprise, I had many new Ancestry hints since my last login almost seven years ago, and after some researching and following the provided hints, my ancestry landed me in Bardstown.

Completely shocked, I yelled at my husband to come look at the jaw-dropping information I had just uncovered. My tree linked to the Montgomery family, and my ancestry told me I was Irish. Something I was also not expecting at all.

Still not entirely sure this was true, I kept it to myself and only told my mom and dad, who gave me a DNA kit for Christmas to investigate my heritage further.

You see, I was always told I came from a long line of Norwegians, and always believed myself to be Swedish through and through.

My results actually came through on Christmas Eve. To my surprise, I was almost 30 percent Irish, and my DNA linked me to not only Bardstown but also an area just east of where we live now in Danville.

Not only had my roots called me home, but they also landed me smack dab right in the middle of where my ancestors lived hundreds of years ago.

Who knows, maybe if I look further I will even find some roots right here in the town we settled in after our move.

Still over the moon excited about the information I found out, I contacted a few friends we have made since settling in Kentucky and told them the crazy and amazing news. I’ll never forget what one of my girlfriends said to me, “Well, I guess you are a Kentuckian after all!”

I guess I am, and what better Christmas present to receive than the knowledge of where I come from and the blessed discovery of a heritage that called to me and brought me back almost to where my ancestors started.

Oh, I am still Norwegian, that part of the test was no surprise with more than 42 percent of my DNA pointing towards it, but, I guess Kentucky was also home all along. Knowing that now makes a whole lot more sense and leaves me happy beyond words going into a new year.

With the truth I uncovered, I encourage everyone to look at their heritage and see what secrets are there. If you’re not originally from here, who knows, maybe your roots called you home as well.

Brittany Fuller is the community editor of The Jessamine Journal and Jessamine Life magazine. She can be reached at brittany.fuller@jessaminejournal.com.