By Any Other Name
Posted by Carol on November 27, 2007
Our beautiful 15 year old daughter has decided she wants to legally change her first name for her 16th birthday. Thankfully, we are still three months away from the big day. She has a perfectly normal, pretty, feminine, unboring name. Yes, I did choose it while I was still on pain killers in the hospital, which mostly explains my choice of a middle name, but overall, it is a fine name – equal to her beauty.
The name she has chosen is also a beautiful name and she says she will make her current first name her new middle name – again I don’t blame her for dropping the middle name I chose while hopped up on percocet. I suggested that she save it for her own daughter who will be born many, many, many (did I say many?) years from now. A great idea, except that she has informed me that she never ever wants to have children. Hmmm…..on some days, part of me can sympathize with that choice, but mostly it makes me wonder – have I made motherhood look that awful?
It also puts a lot of pressure on her older brother to make me a grandmother (many, many, many years from now) and to carry on the family name. Problem with that plan is that he says he never ever wants to get married. Again, have we made it look that bad? Call me old fashioned but I still believe in things being done in order – marriage, then children. So far I am 0 for 2 in the future grandchildren department.
She just told me this decision yesterday and during the three months of waiting for the big birthday change, our daughter has requested that I call her by the new name so she can get used to it. Well, I’ve tried it and it is hard. I felt like there was a strange girl who I never met before sleeping in her bed when I woke her for school this morning. Her “old” name just flows off my tongue followed by the word “honey”. For example, if her current name were Sarah (its not, and neither is her “new” name), then I would call her Sarah-honey. Sigh.
It could be worse, she could be dressing like Britney Spears or be asking for all kinds of piercings and/or tattoos.
Her dad does not know of this request yet and I feel confident that it will not fly with him, so she will have to un-officially use her new name and wait until she
outgrows the idea turns 18 to make it legal.
In the meantime, at school will she be known as “the girl formerly known as ___________” sort of like Prince did when he changed his name to that unpronouncable symbol?
I’m just asking.
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