13 May 2010

The Genetic Code

Interesting news: Eamon Wolfe has a mini-farmer’s tan. Why is this interesting? It means that he certainly doesn’t take after the Wolfe or Meredith sides of the family (Aaron’s), and really not even the McCormack (my father).

Aaron and I, on the other hand, cannot tan without work. Aaron is different than his parents and sister in that his skin will darken, but he has to put some effort into it (such as being a lifeguard and sitting under the sun all day, like he did when he was a teenager). I also have to work to tan, and will burn if I’m not careful (which is why I never bother). We both, however, are pretty naturally fair-skinned otherwise. As children, Aaron and I both had blonde hair (he was actually a tow-head), and Aaron had the bright blue eyes to go with it. We’re good examples of our English/Irish (and in Aaron’s case, Danish) roots.

Eamon? He’s different. His hair (and oh my gosh, he has so much hair) just isn’t turning blonde like we all expected. It’s brown. It’s always been brown. It’s gotten lighter since the black hair of his birth, and is showing some slightly blondish streaks now that he’s out in the sun at the park, but it’s still brown. Firmly brown.

And his eyes? They’re brown, too. They started bluish, like Aaron’s, but get darker all the time. They’re almost as dark as mine, now.

He’s different in the way that he grows, too. I was always tall as a child, usually around the 90th percentile…but my weight was always up in the 90th percentile, too (okay, I’ll be honest—it was actually around the 95th percentile). Aaron was usually right around the 50th percentile for height, though he was always pretty slim as a child.

Eamon, on the other hand, is at about the 90th percentile for height…and about the 35th percentile for weight. Every day, he looks more and more like a long noodle of a toddler. He eats a ton of food, but he’s very active, and well, slender. That’s just Eamon.

So here we have this little 16 month old with dark hair, dark eyes, the start of a tan despite being constantly slathered in sunblock, who is taller than most 2 year olds. He looks nothing like his red-headed cousins or his Irish name, and doesn’t have the growth patterns of either his mother or his father.

So, where did Eamon come from?

Well, we have a few theories.

Theory 1: Eamon's great-grandmother, Aaron's Grandma Meredith, had dark hair when younger. So that's a possibility.
Theory 2: Eamon's other great-grandmother, my Grandma McCormack, also had very dark hair when she was young.

But get a load of Theory 3: My mother was adopted. For years, we were unsure of the identity of her father, but recently unearthed pictures suggest that he was a tall, slender man who was ¼ American Indian—with dark hair, dark eyes, and suntanned skin.

Well, whichever theory is correct, all we know is that Eamon Wolfe has managed to choose characteristics that come from awhile back down the genetic code, and the way that he has put them all together is uniquely him.

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