True Story. Lincoln.Dedicated to ‘Lincoln.’ My 60th Birthday celebrates too, my lost twin.I name him. After sixty years. I name him.I name him and remember him.
My twin. Lincoln.His name is Lincoln. As we approach midnight I say Hello and Goodbye to my twin in one breath.(A medida que nos acercamos a la medianoche, le digo hola y adiós a mi gemelo de una vez)My 60th Birthday is his too.
That he was still born and that ‘we’ were ‘Siamese twins’ (As Mum has explained to me since I was 8 years old)…Resonates with me now as I approach this birthday tomorrow.
(added clarification 29th July. My Mother was always mistaken in her understanding of identical twins and years later, I did explain and discuss that we could not have been identical. nonetheless, she decribed how we were adhered at our backs but “broke away during the birth”, My Nana, maternal grandmother also described my brother too. The details of such and my Mum’s prescription of thalidomide is written about in my official Cambridge autism research centre diagnosis, as the practitioners interviewd my Mum at great length)
back to original and continued …That he was ‘stillborn’ and cremated in the domestic wood burning stove without ceremony or naming has hung with me for … 60 years. That my Mother was prescribed thalidomide to ease her morning sickness has to be great.Never, in my life time, would I have wanted my Mother to feel sick.The drug took my brother. We were joined back to back.He had no arms or legs, I did and I survived.At 5lbs and jaundiced on a cold, dank, Cornish, damp farm – I survived Deli Farm, Delabole, Cornwall. Now a contemporary wind farm or such – once my Grandfather’s property.
When I was 11 years old At Launceston College, I greeted 100 pupils with a statement that would leave anyone confused.Remember, this was pre my formal autism diagnosis from Cambridge Autism Research Centre thirty years after.Remember, this was pre my formal diagnosis of ‘severe gender dysphoria’ and transition female to male from the Gender Clinic…. A new School, new friends, new environment, new plimsoles. Don’t blow it.At assembly in the BIG HALL, a teacher looking through the register asked (randomly) … ‘Is any one of you a twin!?’I shot my hand up with pure delight.I knew the answer to this. “I am!“ I exclaimed“I am!” I announced excitedly”…” but he’s dead” I added. I explained further… We were joined at our backs … We were Siamese like kittens?
A hall of children and blanket silence (I remember) The teachers silent (I remember) The rubber of a sea of plimsoles on polished wood gave off a smell of innocence and Mr. Sheen. In the vast building of a thousand pupils and too many teachers – one sound resonated over my odd and silencing childhood public announcement… Brett’s fart.That and the growing awareness of stinky socks linking to the cafeteria’s lunch time cabbage on the boil. I think that he quite liked the acoustics. I loved him already.
(in sixty years my brother was never given a name. I name him now, today. My brother whom I lost at Birth is called Lincoln)