Senior Mag 2023: Twin Trouble

August 30, 2023 — by George Huang and Hannah Lee
William and Kevin Zhao
Twins navigate and reflect on growing up together.

From the moment they were born, to their first steps, to their first day of school, and soon enough, high school graduation, some siblings have been walking this road side by side their whole lives. There are 10 pairs twins in the Class of 2023: William and Kevin Zhao; Ara and Delara Esfarjani; Mayson and Morris Yu; Hannah and Ryan Baniani; Elizabeth and Samantha Stoiber; Gavin and Luke Wheeler; Anjali and Uma Phalke; ; Ela and Aditya Machiroutu; Gemma and Morgan Pott; Carina and Miranda Yee. In addition, Lucy and Jenny Campbell are triplets whose sister Mary is graduating from Los Gatos. The Falcon asked some of the twins to reflect on their journey together.

William and Kevin Zhao

William said he feels completely normal having an identical twin. However, “from time to time I’m reminded of how special it is,” William said.

Growing up side by side with Kevin, one of the perks he’s discovered is that “you never have to do anything alone.” For instance, when the two brothers go to the gym together, they can help spot one another when they lift weights.

However, William and Kevin shared some of the challenges that come with being a twin. Having to share everything and growing up with someone that’s the exact same age has led William to see their relationship as a “love-hate” one.

“He’s a pain in the a**, but we’ve shared a lot of fun memories together,” William said. “Funny story, but when I first got my license and he was in the car with me, we crashed into our friend’s garage.”

Next fall, William will be staying in California to attend UC Santa Cruz while Kevin will go to the East Coast to attend Boston University. 

“I will definitely miss him,” Kevin said. “But we will call each other on Facetime and hopefully visit each other, so it’s not that bad.”

Ara and Delara Esfarjani

Ara said being a twin feels “normal” and is just like having any other sibling of another age. However, having grown up close together, he’s found they both “share a lot of similar interests and values.” 

“Whatever I do, she does, and vice versa,” Ara said.

Since they often share teachers and classes, they’ve found that being twins brings benefits when it comes to studying for tests, as they act as “built-in study buddies.” 

Although Ara said he hasn’t faced any challenges an ordinary pair of siblings wouldn’t, he said being referred to as “Delara’s brother” or “Ara’s sister” can be difficult to hear at times. 

At the end of the day, however, the siblings always have each other’s backs, despite their occasional disagreements and acts of sibling pettiness. 

“When my sister asks me to pick her up, I usually pick her up an extra 30 minutes late,” Ara said. “I mean, only I have a license.”

Ara will be attending Northeastern University in Boston while Delara will be attending the University of Southern California. 

“We will be pretty far apart for the next part of our lives” said Ara, “But I hope we stay in touch.”

Mayson and Morris Yu

The Yu brothers agreed the best thing about having a sibling the same age is they get to help each other out. Despite the common comparisons from family and friends, Mayson said that they both try not to be competitive with one another in school, but instead help each other out as much as possible.

“Being a twin is great because you get to grow up with a companion and do everything together,” Mayson said. “It’s like having a best friend that experiences everything with you.”

Mayson admitted he’s also saved at least $50 worth of sports game tickets by using his brother’s ASB card, as he doesn’t have his own.

Like other twins, the Yu brothers have found they share similar hobbies such as playing basketball. 

“We do have differences though, in terms of passions, and we generally have more independent lives from one another as we get older,” Mayson said.

Spending almost every day doing everything together, the Yu brothers have naturally gotten into their fair share of arguments, fights and quarrels. 

“But overall, it’s really nice to have someone by your side at the same stage in your life,” Mayson said. “We study together, help each other out and I always have a companion.”

Morris will be attending University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in the fall while Mayson will stay in California to attend UC Berkeley. 

“It’s time for him to live his life and for me to live mine,” Mayson said. “I wish him the best of luck.”

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