The Dopplegänger

Germanic mythology states that every person on the planet has a dopplegänger. However, the purpose of it, depends on which myths you look at. A doppleganger is a double. And there may be some truth to it.

I have some personal experience with a doppleganger. As does my mother. I have not met my doppleganger nor my mom’s, which is probably good because it’s considered bad luck to meet your double. My story:

I was in a restaurant for lunch one day with some coworkers. I was 17 at the time and I was enjoying fajitas. When a woman suddenly came up to our table and said my first name and asked what I was doing there. I had never met this woman in my life, so it was odd that she knew my name. I explained I was having lunch with a coworker and she asked why we had come all the way to Columbia for lunch. Um, we work in the Columbia office of the Missouri Department of Health, it’s really only a couple miles from here to our office. After a few more confused sentences we realized I must not be the woman she thought I was as the woman she thought I was worked for a doctor’s office in a town called Montgomery City.

The woman was insistent that we could pass for twins and it was stranger that we had the same first name. After the woman left my coworker commented that the woman must not spend much time with the girl she mistook me for. I agreed and we continued on with lunch.

Some years later while shopping with a friend, a man came up to me and started talking to me like he had known me my entire life and yet, I had never met him. He asked how Holly was… I asked who was Holly and he got a strange look and said “your mom.” Um, no, my mom’s name is Mollie, not Holly. We realized he was looking for the girl that worked at the doctor’s office in Montgomery City and we went our separate ways.

Total I’ve had five or six of these encounters with people from Montgomery City being surprised by my presence in Columbia. The two places are only 51 miles from each other, really not that far.

Perhaps the oddest part of these encounters though is that my mom apparently has a doppleganger named Holly from Montgomery City and over the years, she’s had a dozen or so encounters with people who have mistaken her for Holly from Montgomery City. Is it possible that my mom’s doppelganger Holly is the mother of my doppelganger that shares my name?

My mom’s maternal side of the family hails from Montgomery City. Meaning it is possible that Holly is a distant cousin of my mother’s. How on earth that lead to my mom’s doppelganger giving birth to a daughter that would share my name and have her genes express in such a way that we can pass as twins, is beyond me. Especially since I have been told all my life how much I look like my father who does not have any distant relations in Montgomery City.

My story is less unique than one might think. If you spend some time on Reddit searching for stories of doppelgangers, you’ll find plenty. And while my doppelganger is apparently a nurse in a much smaller town, some consider doppelgangers to be sinister apparitions. Some stories of doppelgangers make them demonic beings who are trying to steal the lives of their doubles. Others say they’re an omen of death and that meeting your doppelganger foretells that one of you will die soon.

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