This I Believe

Brooke - Taylorsville, Utah
Entered on May 18, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

Hidden Identity

I am the product of a successful artificial insemination procedure. I am the voice for those who do not dare speak, and for the unborn children who are not yet able to ask the questions they will have someday. I speak for any adopted children, any medically acquired children, and for any children who have cruelly been deprived of the rights to which they should be entitled. I believe everyone should have the right to know the answers to their genetic secrets.

I am the child of an invisible father. I am, and may always remain a mystery. I could very well be the whitest African American on this continent, yet have no facts to prove it. I may be derived from a royal blood line, but have no proof to acquire my throne. Will I ever know how many other half brothers and sisters I have walking this earth? An even more disturbing thought; what if I was to accidentally procreate with one of them? My desperately desired answers were classified confidential before I was given a chance to cast my vote.

Many people take for granted the answers to such seemingly ordinary questions. Who is my father? What is his name? Is he still alive? Is he happy? Is he funny, athletic, intelligent, musically or artistically talented? How tall is the man of my tall tale? Did he put the gray in my blue-gray eyes? Whoever said “A picture is worth a thousand words,” will never know exactly how true that statement would become to someone.

Establishing an identity seems impossible when half of your genetic story is a secret. I may be genetically prone to inherit certain illnesses, but I am not privy to the knowledge to prevent or retard such ailments. Am I likely to have high blood pressure or cholesterol? Am I likely to inherit Alzheimer’s or Cancer? If I drink am I at a higher risk to become an alcoholic? Should I begin buying Rogaine in bulk? Should I be eating more carrots and learning sign language now? It is difficult to establish an identity in life, but without knowing such vital answers, even the simple questions become daunting.

When or will these questions be answered? Do I not have any rights as a test tube child? If my father knew what kind of questions I yearn to find answers to, would he or could he agree to remedy some of them? I am not asking for money or a relationship; a simple picture of my father, and a non-evasive game of twenty questions would make my puzzle complete. Who holds the secret key to the dusty filing cabinet? Everyone should have the right to know the answers to their genetic secrets, this I believe.