Special Bond: Identical and Simpatico When they were kids, identical twins Janice Morris and Caroline Satchell sometimes felt a little shortchanged. Nobody could tell them apart -- not their teachers, not even their friends. But now the two can't imagine life without each other.

Special Bond: Identical and Simpatico

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As StoryCorps travels the country it's helping Americans interview some of the most important people in their lives.

(Soundbite of music)

YDSTIE: Today, two women who can't imagine life without each other.

Ms. JANICE MORRIS: Hi, I'm Janice Morris.

Ms. CAROLINE MORRIS-SATCHELL: And I'm Caroline Morris-Satchell.

Ms. MORRIS AND MORRIS-SATCHELL: And we're identical twins.

Ms. MORRIS: People used to ask me, what is it like to be a twin?

Ms. MORRIS-SATCHELL: The strangest thing is that I don't have a separate memory from her. Our childhoods were identical. We used to just desperately want a best friend; because when you were young, you just had to have a best friend. And I remember Janice and I used to get so frustrated cause all of our friends said, well, I like you both the same. I can't pick one over the other. And that just drove us nuts cause we just didn't feel special. You know, we were twins all the time.

We used to even have a Sunday school teacher who didn't even bother to learn our names. She just called us both twin. Twin, come here. Twin, come there.

Ms. MORRIS: And the twin questions! I hated the twin questions. Always, who's older, like being born 15 minutes ahead of the other person made some difference in life. I used to say Caroline - who was the one who was born first - looks so much older as a result. Then, of course, it was inevitably followed by the question, do you feel each other's pain? Do you have ESP?

Ms. MORRIS-SATCHELL: No, we didn't feel each other's pain. No, we didn't have ESP.

Ms. MORRIS: Did you have your own secret language?


Ms. MORRIS: And the most common of all, of course, was did you ever switch dates on each other, which was ridiculous. I mean, I guess there are twins who do that, but not any self-respecting twins. Although her husband, to this day, cannot tell us apart on the phone because we do have very identical voices. So...

Ms. MORRIS-SATCHELL: And we did use to play a trick where we'd call up and both be on the phone and have a conversation with him and he'd never realize both of us was on the phone at the same time.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Ms. MORRIS: But, I think, you know, the plus side of being a twin, people used to ask me, what is it like to be a twin and my answer always was, what's it like not to be a twin? I mean, it's been my own identity for my whole life and I don't really know what it's like not to be. I do know the benefits, though, I think. No two people could be closer. We are the kind of twins that just were simpatico all of our lives - used each other as sounding boards and I knew if anything ever went wrong in my life I could count on her. You know, whenever we have a problem, we don't have to explain it one another.

Ms. MORRIS-SATCHELL: It was really wonderful to feel like I know somebody so completely.

Ms. MORRIS: It's just an insight that no two other people can really have. So I guess the one thing I want to say to you is I think you're the best thing that ever happened to me.

Ms. MORRIS-SATCHELL: We really feel lucky; we really do.

Ms. MORRIS: Being a twin was the best thing that ever happened to us.

Ms. MORRIS-SATCHELL: We recommend it to everybody.

(Soundbite of laughter)

(Soundbite of music)

YDSTIE: Caroline Satchell and Janice Morris at a mobile StoryCorps booth in Washington, D.C. Their conversation and all other StoryCorps interviews are archived at the Library of Congress. Mobile booths are currently in Ames, Iowa and Watertown, New York. Make a reservation for an interview of your own at npr.org.

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