Sing with me now--
"A double pleasure is waitin' for you,
A double pleasure with Doublemint Gum
A double great feelin'
Makin' you realize
Doublemint's the one for you...."
My identical twin sister Becki and I loved those old Doublemint commercials, and we dreamed of being the Doublemint twins. When we grew up, we realized we were both about six inches too short and two cup sizes too small to ever be asked to jaunt around in bathing suits on TV. But it was a great dream!
Twins are asked certain questions over and over, and so I'm presenting to you....
The Beth and Becki "Twinship" FAQ
Q. So are you two close?
A. We are close in that we talk often, trust each other, and like to hang out. We aren't close in the way some twins are--we do not live next door to each other with adjoining back yards or anything. In fact, we live halfway across the country from each other. We were extremely competitive growing up, and it was very healthy for us to go to different colleges, in different cities, where we could develop individually into adults. Honestly, I find it sad when twins are so close they can't be apart--we both really value our individuality.
Q. Are you a lot alike, or really different?
A. We have similar talents though there are areas in which we each have more natural gifting, and we've pursued different interests. Our personalities have always been different, with Becki more extroverted and me more introverted. And many people are shocked to find out that our religious beliefs are very different--Becki does not believe in God, while I am a Christian.
Q. Do you have a psychic connection? (Insert The Twilight Zone music here.)
A. No. We used to call each other and find out we'd both had hiccups that day. Oooh...weird. But I think that was more tied to us both getting hiccups easily than to a psychic connection between our diaphragms.
Q. So, do you share each other's pain? If I hit you, would she feel it?
A. No, but if you hit me, you might end up feeling some pain. (Anyone who knows me well is chuckling because I'm not exactly physically intimidating....)
Q. Do you have a "twin language"?
A. We sort of used to. When we were very young, we could understand each other's toddler babbling when our parents couldn't tell what we were saying. But we outgrew that. Also--I asked Becki to review this post, and she reminded me about something else--"hmm hmm language." We used to talk to each other with our mouths closed--forming the words and vocalizing through our noses, but never opening our lips. When we could get through it without dissolving in giggles, we'd then try to interpret each other. In Becki's words, "Although that wasn't 'real' twinspeak, we definitely could understand one another's hmm-hmm language better than anyone else could understand us. I wonder if [our husbands] would be able to understand as well now, joining our little hmm-hmm club...."
Q. Did you ever switch classes?
A. Yes, for most of one day, our freshman year of high school. Three or four of my teachers caught her (possibly because she talked more than me.) None of her teachers caught me. One of her teachers gave her a referral for "ditching" the next day and let her sit there, horrified, for several minutes before he told her it was fake. He was still telling that story eight years later when I visited his classroom.
Q. Did you ever fool your boyfriends?
A. No, and if a guy had ever been so unobservant that he was unable to tell us apart, I don't think that relationship would have lasted long.
Q. So, do you look alike?
A. Well, you can check out the photo of her in yesterday's post
and form your own opinion. In "real life" we go through phases of looking more and less alike. These days we look pretty similar, with similar weights and hair lengths. Opinions of friends run the gamut from "You look exactly alike!" to "Well, you look like sisters, but not twins." When people get to know us both well, they generally have no trouble telling us apart. As small children we looked very, very similar, and I still can't tell us apart in baby and toddler photos. But Becki has had some run-ins between her nose and various stationary objects (she's broken it a few times), so that has given us different profiles. There are so many other environmental factors, starting in the womb, that create differences between identical twins.
Q. Do you like being twins?
A. Yes. It's fun being odd, but odd in a good way.
I think that covers many of the frequently asked questions. Feel free to ask more in the comments section, and I'll leave my answers as comments.
And, no, we don't have matching mint-green bathing suits...though we do both like to chew gum.
12. Baby monitor
13. Cell phone charger