When I was younger, I used to think that the world was SO big and there were SO many people in it that, by default, there must be hundreds, maybe thousands of people like me.
I don’t know that I thought of these people as look-alikes, but I do remember thinking that somewhere– perhaps in Australia, since the water swirled the opposite way down the toilet there– there was somebody in a house just like mine, but backwards. Somebody saying the same things, making the same movements, thinking the same thoughts as me. A sort of mirror double.
I thought, at the time, that there must be infinity other ‘doubles’ like me– thought-doubles, action-doubles, house-doubles, haircut-doubles. I would think, ‘I wonder how many other people are thinking of how many doubles they have RIGHT NOW,’ and I would think, ‘Ohp! I bet I just stopped being somebody’s double!’ and I would get into these imagined contests in which I suddenly broke into a skip or karate-kicked or stuck my nose against the glass to get out of sync with these imagined double-people who had been my double all my life up until that point. I remember wondering if I would ever ‘lose’ all my doubles as time progressed and our thoughts, actions, and whatever suddenly diverged from one another’s.
It’s strange to remember this now (when I have both a better concept of numbers and the individuality/uniqueness of every human being). As a girl in her twenties really just stepping out into that plane of finding/making myself as a person– and especially as someone trying to be a writer/artist– I appreciate now more than ever that no two people make the same journey or have the same experience. And while having no real ‘doubles’ might seem somewhat isolating/island-making, it’s also kind of earth-shatteringly awesome.
May we each burn as brilliantly (and differently) as the vast and varied stars.