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7.27.2013

10 Things I'll Do With My Soon-To-Be Twin Brother

Guest Post by Dan Matthews



Hey, folks! I'm on vacation, taking a much-needed blog break. Some batteries need recharging. But don't worry -- I've enlisted the generous help of some great guest bloggers to keep things fresh around here while I'm gone. Here's Dan Matthews sharing about his journey to meet his biological family -- and his twin brother(!) -- for the first time.

This week I'll find out if I have a biological family. And I'll find out if I have a twin brother.

I mean, I know I have a biological family somewhere, hence... me being alive (maybe not necessarily a twin brother... unless everyone has a twin sibling they don't know about). But this week I'll find out if I'm actually related to the biological family that had recently revealed themselves to me. My honest to God, this is your blood, FAMILY. I'm maybe 5 days from finding out. And it's FREAKING me out.

So, I could think of no better way to fill up the void of this blog space left by Angry Asian Man than to write about how it feels to be in emotional limbo while waiting to hear back from DNA results determining whether or not someone is related to you.




I'm a Korean adoptee. I've lived my entire life in happy ignorance of where I came from. I always got asked if I was curious about my past or if I wanted to know more about my birth family. And I always truthfully replied, "No." Not that I had any kind of negative feelings about my adoption or anything, I was just content how things were. Nothing more, nothing less.

But as I got older, my thoughts on the matter started to change. I recently started getting more involved in the Korean adoption community, and had even been making plans to head back to Korea for the International Korean Adoptee Association (IKAA) Gathering in Seoul this summer. It'll be one of the largest homecoming gatherings of Korean adoptees, and I've been excited to be apart of it. Meeting adoptees from around the world, exploring more of my heritage, I couldn't wait. And then all of this happened.

Long story short, against what I thought was going to be a near impossible feat, I decided to start the process to search for my birth mother. And somehow I succeeded. Or at least as of right now I believe I've succeeded. And I've not only found my birth mother, but my father, a younger sister, and... a twin brother.

I decided to begin the process after some long conversations with friends. With the gathering inching closer and closer, a birth search was an inevitable thought that crept its way into my brain, and then continued to eat away until I did something about it. And I did. And now I'm potentially a week away from meeting the family of whom I could have been living with my entire life.

Which brings me to today; being in a constant state of "is it or isn't it?" and playing a giant game of "What If?"

Before this started, and there was no family knowledge, nothing was at stake. There weren't any feelings or emotions at play. There wasn't another person(s) who I had to worry about. Everything was status quo. But now my entire life has changed... and well, to put it bluntly, I just want it to be true so badly. I want to meet the flesh from which I came. I want to see people who resemble me. And I want a twin. How bleeping cool (can I drop the F bomb on Angry Asian Man?) would it be to actually have a twin. Now that I know that these are actual possibilities in my life, I don't want anything or anyone to take them away. I want to be selfish. Part of me doesn't want to look at the DNA results when I get them back. I just want to believe. And on top of that, it's not just me that I have to worry about it, with respect to my biological family (because this is probably even more emotional for them), I can't even imagine what they might be going through.

The first time I looked at the photo they had sent me, I honestly couldn't tell if we were related. I even think I went out of my way to try to find some kind of resemblance. I started doubting that there was any way this could be true. However, over the last few days, I've begun to feel really positive about it. I'm not sure why I'm so optimistic now, but I've started to think that this is a very real possibility. Kind of like a shaky knee that can predict the weather, or a 6th sense that can predict... ghosts or something, I just feel that it has to be true.

That's where I'm at right now. Just waiting. Over thinking.

I'm blessed to say I'll be going out with a supportive group of friends and filmmakers too. I'll be traveling there with Jason Hwang, Jon Maxwell (also an adoptee) and Eugene Choi, who will be documenting everything as we prepare to tell the story of one of the most personal experiences of my life. They've already been by my side as I've received all of this news, and will be helping me create a unique web series and documentary around this journey. As a musician, (I'm the front person from hip hop/alternative band, afterschoolspecial), I'll also be producing an album inspired by this trip. You can check out what we'll be doing and if you'd like, make a donation, by visiting our Kickstarter page here.

I'll also be sending live updates and photos from my Instagram and Twitter accounts @DANakaDAN. So please follow along!

So, finally, without having 100% complete knowledge of what's going on yet, I thought I'd be fun to leave you with my list of 10 things I'm going to immediately do with my soon-to-be twin brother:

1. Take a photo of him and show people and tell them it's me, but then laugh, and say, "That's not me. It's my twin brother. Stupid."

2. Watch The Parent Trap. Because apparently it's about twins.

3. Go to a club, and swap places with him while we're dancing with someone and see if they notice.

4. Think of an awesome twin high five that only the two of us know about.

5. See if we have psychic abilities.

6. After we find out we don't have psychic abilities, see if can some how gain physic abilities.

7. Get t-shirts with our faces on it.

8. Start a twin rap duo.

9. Start our own twin language.

10. Make up for lost time and get into ten fist fights with him, as I'm sure we would have fought a lot when we were younger. But then give each other our awesome twin high-five.

Dan Matthews is half man half tyrannosaurus rex. He's currently the productions director for International Secret Agents, emcee for hip hop/rock alternative group afterschoolspecial, and is about to embark on one of craziest experiences of his life. Follow journey @DANakaDAN (insta/tweets). Connect: Daniel@ISAStaff.com