Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What's In A Name?

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet."

Really though... Being recently married I have been given the option to change my last name. My last name never felt like it was mine to keep or discard. Never something that has defined me. Now that I have the option to remove it, I want to cling to it with every bit of my being. 

I have had two last names growing up, my given and my mothers ex-husbands. I was never given a choice in the matter. There is also my mother's biological mothers name and her biological fathers. Not to mention my biological fathers.  I have never identified with these. Will I, if I change it, identify with my husbands last name? It's not a horrible one. Just awfully German. Something I am definitely not. But I am also not a *bob* or a *fish*. 
So what am I?! Who am I?! Will it change my entire existence as I know it? Will it make me feel closer to my husband? Or is it part of an ages long tradition that started as a sign of ownership? 

The sane part of me just wants to do it and get it over with the names *bob* and *fish* where hardly even mine. The crazy "be your own woman" part of me wants to say screw tradition. I was ready for marriage. Ready to commit. Ready to tell him how much I love him and make a promise in front of family and friends. But what is wrong with me that I want to cling on to a name that was never really mine to begin with.

I am a nameless child. I started out as a *bob* two years later I was a *fish*. But I came from neither of those. I came from *tom* and *car*. Would that make a difference? If I had been named after my father? Or would it make me want to cling to it harder? 

So here I sit. Paperwork in front of me. Waiting for me to tell it what to do, and I still can not make up my mind.

Oh, but I took the first step and changed it on Facebook. Can't that make it official enough?

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