What's In A Name?

I've been thinking a lot about names recently. Not first names.. surnames. And what they mean to someone. What does your surname mean to you?

Is it romantic to think your name means "family"? That it means "where I belong"? And deeper than that, about heritage. I guess it's different for men, because a woman's name changes throughout her life as she takes on her husband's name and becomas part of his family.

I've partly been thinking about it because my husband and I are not yet divorced. He said he was going to file and I believed he needed to do that in defiance of what I'd done and as part of his "closure". Or maybe he just wanted to see how I would react, but he never took it further. I suspect the £450 it costs to file the petition these days had something to do with that though. And that's not me being cynical, it's certainly the reason I haven't done it it. Do you know how many pairs of Christian Louboutins you can get for that!? Well.. okay one but still!

So as part of this process, I am going to file for divorce (Note to self: Add to To Do list.. ) because I want the VA to understand that he  has not been and will not be a presence in my life going forwards and therefore that of Lily's. But that made me think about my surname, which is not my own. It is my husbands family name. And I am no longer part of that family. And I know I could keep it going forwards, I don't legally have to change it back but.. it's not my name.

If I did change it "back" though, what would I be changing back to? My surname before this one, I loved by the way but it was my first husbands. I never changed it after we divorced until I remarried.

And before that? My surname was my step-dads (current step-dad). Not legally as he didn't adopt me, but I was known by that name at school, college, etc.

Before that, the name name on my birth certificat - that of my first step-dad. Not mine by blood but marriage. And frankly, I don't want anything to do with that name. I have no love for the owner of it and he none for me I am sure. None that he ever showed me when I was old enough to recognise it anyway.

So if I do give up my husbands name when I divorce.. what do I call myself? I could keep his name but it makes me uncomfortable somehow. Like I'm trespassing where I'm not wanted.

It makes me think about the impact not feeling like I have a name of my own has on me. I could revert to my mothers maiden name.. but I don't want anything to do with that either and her dad did her no favours so that would just be wrong somehow. My nan's maiden name?

I could change my name entirely. By deed poll. Just make something up that sounds right with my first name. I like that idea. Because it would be no one's name but my own and given my independence and how hard I have fought to get to where I am now, it seems to be the right thing to do. Maybe it would give me that final sense of self. But I'm pretty sure my friends would all think I've flipped a lid completely :-)

I suppose the biggest question is, does it really matter? Would it matter to you?

No comments:

Post a Comment