Friday, 15 August 2008
SURNAMES FOUR, BLOG NAMES THREE, GIVEN NAMES LOST COUNT
Names are odd things, we have no choice about what we are called as children, either in our given or surnames. Potentially as a woman you may get to change the surname part,once, or twice perhaps!
Well I've changed my surname four times now, I've changed my blog name three and my given name has so many variations to different people it's hard keeping up!
My surnames obviously started with the one I was born with. It was a difficult name, no one could spell it, everybody changed it and I was either known as cockerel or cockroach at school, simply cause the first two letters are the same.
It was a name that was well known in my home town, the family went back several generations. When I started my nurse training I had to work past my family's factory, with my name emblazoned for everyone to see. I hated that, I didn't want to be associated with being the bosses daughter. The town I come from was an industrial one, and the people I was working with did not come from the same background as me. I was (and still am, heaven help me!) middle class. I'd been privately educated, I spoke with no accent. The town accent is terrible, it's pure black country, as in 'do yerou want u kipper tie' (do you want a cup of tea!) To compensate for speaking 'posh' I learnt to swear, I was the only person in the hospital who could say 'fuck' in a BBC voice!
So when I got married, the relief of being able to change my name to one that everyone could spell! I kept this name for many years,even though I divorced the man it belonged to. My boys didn't want me to change my name, they needed the unity at that time after their Dad left.
Second marriage came along and although I didn't want to take another man's name on, I couldn't stay with the original man's one. So I changed again. This name was another sensible one, no problems with spelling it, but it rankled with me that I'd taken a man's name.
This famous five week marriage! As in five weeks actually living together two years waiting on the divorce, meant that at last I could change my name to one of my choosing.
It felt very obvious a choice to me. My Mum had been dead many years by now. I wanted to have something of hers. I also wanted a woman's name. So I changed it by deed poll.
This surname belongs to me, and more importantly, me to it. I will never change my name again, whatever my marital status may end up being.
This name feels right. One of the things I struggle with is having an emotional home, and this name grounds me in a way that the other didn't. It feels like me.
And now my blog names have been doing the same sort of thing. The name I started with Prada Pixie, was a joyous child name, especially as I became known as pixie, which I seriously loved.
Bollinger byrd was born out of adversity, in that I felt compelled to close down PP and reinvent myself. But the name wasn't right, it wasn't me.
Of course now as I've been struggling this summer to come to a better understanding of myself, and an acceptance, the name had to go. Being with Sorrow and talking for the days I spent with her, it emerged that I was changing and growing and rising like a phoenix and the name was therefore obvious. And like my surname it feels right.
I feel more settled, calmer, somehow at being this new me. As if I've been there all along, but couldn't find me, cause of the wrong names.
As for my given name, take your pick, as I've been called ;
Lou, by my parents, and now my best friend, it's defiantly the name that someone has to earn the right to call me in terms of love.
Mandy, most people call me this, even though I don't much like the name, it feels a very juvenile name to me.
Mand, which is fine again, doesn't make me feel anything, except perhaps the people who call me this know me well and it's used as an affectionate nickname.
Amanda, which is my given name,and has horrid connotations of being in trouble at school, so I associate it with authority and fear, so I find it difficult to be called. Which is sad, cause it's this name that means, worthy of love.
Big Sis, obvious that one.
As is mummy, mums, mumsy and mum. I like all of those a lot. Although only get called the more childish ones in ironic affection nowadays!
It seems to me that I've spent an awful lot of my life looking for the real me, and more importantly accepting that real me. And changing my blog name, is definitely and bizarrely a way that feels as if I'm nearly there. And if I could just sort out my given name now!!