Written by Ann Aguirre
I’ve been asked to write about what would happen if I woke up in my best friend’s body. For me, that would be weirder than most, I think, because my husband is also my best friend. In addition to coping with having a different body, I’d also be a cis man, and if that wasn’t difficult enough, I’d also be working as a director at a pharmaceutical company, who’s currently training to take the reins as CEO in less than a year.
First of all, I don’t have any background in business. I’ve had corporate jobs before, but it’s been more than ten years, and I was never an executive. I usually did admin work and I worked in HR, so I have no professional preparation for this situation. The best case scenario would be if we swapped bodies and he was around in my body to give me guidance. But oh my gosh, if we swapped like it happened in Like Never and Always, where my body passed away and I ended up as Andres—
I got a cold shiver just thinking abut it. I think I’d have to plead amnesia or something in the hospital. Otherwise I might ruin the company my husband’s father has spent his life building up. And that would probably be my first life tip. If you’re worried about how well you can assimilate as the other person, plead amnesia!
I watch a lot of Korean and Taiwanese dramas, and they sometimes do stories about someone ending up in someone else’s body after death. Usually it’s someone who’s been wronged and has unfinished business. They make all kinds of mistakes early on and they run around hysterically trying to convince the deceased’s loved ones that, Hey, it’s really me in here! Which I think is a bad idea for lots of reasons, and it generally gets them in trouble with the divine authorities who gave that second chance to begin with. But when that doesn’t happen, pleading amnesia is the best option. If you claim you don’t remember anything about who you were, nobody can argue when you do things that are out of character. And medically speaking, there are cases of people who sustained brain injuries and whose personality and behavior changed afterward.
But back to life as my husband… ack, that would be so confusing, especially for the kids. And it would be so hard to see them missing, well, me when I’m right there, and they don’t know it’s their dad who’s gone. I think I’d either have to go back to school to ‘relearn’ stuff I never knew before I could work at the company or maybe I’d have to ‘retire’ early for health reasons. Maybe I’d try to continue writing under my husband’s name, eventually? There are people who are able to find patterns in writing, though, and I wonder if later, they would discover an uncanny similarity between our works and then people would say it was my husband writing my books all along? Crap, I’d totally hate that.
I’m not sure what I’d do, if I had to live the rest of my life as Andres, but I’d be lonely as heck, and I’m not sure I’d ever be able to tell anyone. Of course, if I’m right about how that sort of thing works in Like Never and Always, some of Andres would eventually bleed through and I’d become an amalgam of the two of us in time. If that happened, then I could become a CEO of a pharmaceutical company and do business deals in Frankfurt.
Thanks for giving me the chance to write such a mind-bending post! I hope you love Like Never and Always. Feel free to post thoughts or questions in the comments. I look forward to hearing from you, readers.