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Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Adopted and Doppelganger Affect


Doppelganger is defined as 'A ghostly double or counterpart of a living person' (thanks to In other words, your twin. 

We all have a 'doppelganger'. Most of us have never met our 'doppelganger'. But realize, out there somewhere, is someone who is the 'exact' copy of yourself. For an adopted person, this affect is terrifying. 

I've always known that I was adopted ( at 6 weeks old) and knew that there was a large probability that I had/have siblings/relatives out there somewhere that I haven't met yet. The doppelganger, was the least of my worries. Or so I thought. 

Yesterday Dec 6th, marked the sombre anniversary of the Massacre at École Polytechnique in Montreal in 1989. 28 innocent men and women were slain by a lone gunman (later identified as Marc Lépine, who eventually took his own life). Now, for most people this anniversary would be marked, acknowledged and a prayer said for the families of those that were lost. For me, it marked something completely different and potentially life changing.

As I read a few articles about the Massacre (both in English and Francaise), I came across some photos of the men and women that were killed and stopped dead in my tracks gazing at one specific photo. 

It was like I jumped back in history and was looking at myself. The shock engulfed my entire being. Tears flowed down my cheeks as I shook wondering what I was looking at. Here was a woman who was 21 in 1989 and I was 22. We were almost exactly the same age. She had my eyes, my nose, my lips but yet she was unknown to me. I had never nor ever would meet her. I knew nothing about 'Annie Turcotte' until I read the article. Still, a part of me gazed into her eyes and saw a life that I longed for. A life of knowing who I was, where I came from, who my parents were, everything. She had it all and he stole it. Tears started to flow all over again. 

I spent hours reading the article over and over and staring into 'myself'. Was this the 'eternal abyss' I had heard about from my English Professor all those years ago? Was this me, seeing my own mortality end tragically? 

Did a piece of me die when Annie was viciously murdered? The paradox is mind numbing. 

Here it is 24 hrs later, and I'm still in a state of awe. What do I do with this? It's not like I can run up to her family and say 'Hi, I'm your long lost family member and I look just like your murdered daughter.'  

Now for the real shocker. My doppelganger is my daughter's doppelganger as well. My beautiful, 17 yr old daughter is almost an exact copy of me. Which in turn, means she is also a doppelganger for Annie. Bizarre? A case of strong genetic sequencing? Were we related to her? That is the biggest mystery of all.

More to come. Stay tuned.

1 comment:

  1. That's really scary mum... like.. really scary that she looks so much like. I got really teary when I read both this and the article. When I looked at the picture it was scary seeing someone who looked so much like myself staring back at me.


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