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Monday, September 29, 2008

Surname Shmurname, Right?

I have one of those last names that garnered me quite a bit of negative press in high school, as well as unwanted attention. I heard the same jokes over and over again, and everyone thought they were some original hot shot when they said "I bet you never heard this before..."

The years went on, and even though people got older, the jokes still come. I was a 10 year old saying "I cannot wait to get married so I can change my name! I hate it!"

Now I am getting married, and get this... I'm conflicted!

For so many years I harbored bitterness towards this grief-causing moniker, and now that I finally have the option to change my name, I'm biting my lip!

Mr. JeffMemorial's last name is really nice. I've practiced the signature (of course), and it looks beautiful. It sounds lovely. I've said it a few times around girlfriends and we all smiled and giggled. To say it outloud makes my heart flutter in a wonderful way.

There is this part of me though that is sad to lose my last name. It's almost like it became a part of who I am. It's become my own badge of courage and something I'm proud of, and not from a making fun of standpoint.

I guess when you're younger it's easy to want to change your name. We constantly wish that our parents had named us something different. Heck, it took me forever to find my own first name not boring and frumpy. Now I like it. I kind of grew into my name, so to speak. Instead of it just being a name, it really became an identity... and maybe that's just a part of growing up.

And my mom was right. She would tell me that you may not like your name now, but when you're older you'll realize how lovely and distinguished it sounds.

As a compromise for myself, because I really do want to take Mr. JeffMemorial's name, I am moving my current last name to my middle name when I get married.

I vainly thought about hyphenating and keeping my maiden name prominent, but it sounded and looked ridiculous. It just wasn't an option. My name, as it stands with my first, middle and last name comes in at 22 letters. There is no need to add more to the mix.

This kind of falls under a category of things that come along with wedding planning that you didn't expect to be dealing with. It's not necessarily bad, but I've noticed that part of the planning process, whether we like it or not, is examining who we are now and where we really want to go.

Really.

I'm happy with where I'm going, but I'll miss my joke of a last name.

Really.

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5 Comments:

Blogger Andrew said...

It must have been hard to have a last name like Boobfart

Monday, September 29, 2008 10:21:00 AM  
Blogger AmyJean said...

It's very funny to how attached you can get to your name. I've discussed hyphenating my last name - it didn't go over well. Lol... bUt you are right, you don't realize how much you will miss it, until its almost gone ! :)

Monday, September 29, 2008 11:04:00 AM  
Blogger Mrs. in May said...

I am totally conflicted as well. I have decided to hyphenate professionally and go with a whole new name in all other aspects of life. I've worked really hard on building up my name and credibility in the work world and think it will help me hang on. Plus, I Googled my new name and there are like a 1000 people with that name! But my original name- everyone of them is me!

Monday, September 29, 2008 4:36:00 PM  
Blogger Miss Glen Allen said...

I completely understand. I am wanting to go back to school for my Ph.D. It's something I always wanted to do, and I've always wanted to be called. Dr. Maidenname. That's part of the Ph.D. goal for me. I was really, really sad when I realized I'll never be Dr. Maidenname b/c I'll be married by then, and I'll be Dr. Glen Allen. I really wanted to honor my father's memory by adding the additional distinction to his family name. Now, it can never happen. Your last name really does grow to be a big part of your identity. I am coming to terms with the fact that I'll have a new name. Hyphenating is also not an option for me, b/c I figure everyone is still just going to call you by your married name anyway, so what's the point? It's going to take me some time to get used to being called Mrs. Glen Allen after 25 years of going by my family name, but I'll adjust . . . I hope.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008 1:01:00 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Dear friend, I am SO with you. I got married on the 20th and changed my name on Monday. My co-workers have already made the switch and I'm picking up the phone and saying my maiden name. It feels like I am lying. I spent 28 years spelling my name and now I have a 4 letter name you can't possibly mess up.
But I still cried when I left the social security office.
It's a change of identity and a set of emotions I wasn't at all prepared for!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008 1:32:00 PM  

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