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I was born an identical twin. My parents were very young when we were born. Just 21 years old with a 2 year old toddler already.

It must have been extremely challenging for them to have these three babies to take care of when they were just babies themselves. My brother was born legally blind and never really felt comfortable in his own skin. He wasn’t very loving or even kind to my sister and I. We always had each other ever since we were just one cell that split into two. We shared the same room until well into our teenage years. Most of the time it wasn’t by choice, but the few times we lived in a house big enough to have our own rooms we always ended up in the same bed every single night. We were very poor and moved around more times than I can count. It really didn’t matter too much to me because I always had my sister there. We had our own language that no one else could understand. We grew out of it eventually, but always had that personal connection that really can’t be explained.

When we were 18 months old we came down with the mumps. This was just before they came out with the vaccine. My sister got better, but I didn’t. I was lethargic, had a fever and my head hurt constantly. My mother took me to the pediatrician over and over again telling him that something was wrong. He kept dismissing it as just a virus that was lingering.

Finally after the fifth visit in two weeks she called him again. He thought for a moment and told my mother to bring me right back in because there was one more test that he didn’t do. When we got there he tried to bend my head forward to touch my chin to my chest. I failed the test and my mother and the doctor looked at each other in fear. He immediately did a spinal tap. Positive. My back had already started to curve throwing my shoulders back in an unnatural state. I spent some time in the hospital recovering not realizing at the time that my mother's actions saved my life. My sister wanted to visit me all the time. I don’t remember the nights in that I’m sure I blocked it our being the first time we were ever separated. When It was time to go home my mother and sister met me at the door. My sister ran up to me throwing her arms around me and said, “What’s the matter honey? You got a boo boo?” Fast forward to when we were three I remember some of that day. We had just returned from grocery shopping and my mother was unloading the car. My sister jumped into the driver's seat and accidentally pushed the gear into neutral. Our driveway was a hill so the car started to roll backwards. She got scared and jumped out. The door pushed her under the car and the front tire ran over her entire right side. My mind blocked out that part, but I do remember seeing my dad clear as day jump off the lawnmower and over the fence to the driveway. He landed on his back but got right back up. That’s the only part I remember of that day. At the hospital they found several broken bones and severe internal injuries in her pelvis. The injuries were so alarming that my parents were accused of sexual abuse and none of us were permitted to see her for a week. I don’t remember that week either but I’m told that I didn’t eat, sleep or want for anything but my sister. What I do remember was the day we went to pick her up. My mother and I met her at the door. She was standing there in the glass doorway holding two wooden blocks up against the window. One was red and one was blue. As soon as I could I ran in, threw my arms around her and said, “What’s the matter honey? Did you get run over by a car?

This particular story is really cool and sweet, but in retrospect I feel like it resembles my innate predisposition to being a codependent. Something I struggled with my whole life.

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