By Sukayna Kazmi
Growing up, my parents told me a lot of interesting things, like how I’m half-Indian and half-Pakistani or how I’m the first person in our family to pursue journalism, but nothing stopped me in my tracks — until this happened: “Did you know there’s a girl from our community who was born on the same day as you were, in the same hospital, and whose mum I know really well?,” asked my mum, as though she didn’t just drop a bomb that I basically have a supposed ‘twin’ I’ve never met in my life.
As it turned out, we even moved in the same social circles. Through mutual friends, I continued to hear a lot about this ‘twin’, and all they kept telling me was how similar we were. We’re both assertive, and enjoy humanitarian work, writing blogs, public speaking — the list seemed to go on! And yet, I never got the chance to speak to her. Until I bumped into her mom the other day and she mentioned that her daughter had moved to Canada to study… journalism! I couldn’t even disguise my “you’ve got to be joking” face. I mean, what are the odds that she’d have the same interests as me and choose the same career. It’s not even a common career path. Last time I checked, every desi parents’ dream is to see their kids become doctors or engineers or — you get the gist. So did my dad, until I convinced him that I’d still make him proud as a journalist (but we can save that bittersweet dramatic story for another time).
Going back to my jaw-drop moment, a thought struck me. It’s been 19 years; why in the world have I not connected with this long-lost sister of mine. You can guess what happened next… I forgot about it. Again. Don’t blame me: Working part-time, studying and juggling other responsibilities can be hard. I often feel 35, with three kids, juggling two jobs. So, I didn’t remember again till I was pondering what I should write about next — and then it just clicked.
After my sub-editor gave me the thumbs-up, I decided I was going to do it. I was finally going to message my ‘twin’ when I got home.
“Mum, this is weird, what do I message her, how do I start?!” I say, frantically pacing back and forth in the kitchen.
“Can you relax? You’re acting like you’re texting a guy for the first time.”
Did my mom just make a guy joke? You don’t really hear those from desi parents. Maybe I really was just overthinking this.
“Just be yourself,” she says with a giggle, stirring the butter chicken. I know she found all this very amusing.
I decided to just be myself while messaging her. She got back to me in no time. And would you believe it? It was unbelievably easy to have a conversation with her. I’m still laughing over how much I fretted, now that I know how chill she is.
Life works in mysterious ways. Who knows, maybe you have a soul sibling living halfway across the world or even across the street, who’s just like you, who you have no idea about. I just got lucky that I got to connect with mine.
Sukayna is a KT intern. She set her mind to change the world when she was younger, but realised that she should start by changing her sleeping pattern