Tuesday, June 5, 2012

By Any Other Name

I'm not really fond of my name, Nancy.  It's the name of a comic strip character.  It's the name of an extrovert.  It's a nickname rather than a real name.  It's . . . it's . . . it's not me.

Nancy is not a family name; I'm named after my mother's college roommate.  My mother did not have many friends, so Mother's choice of name was her way of honoring her friend.  I never met her friend, though, so I have no connection with the original Nancy.

There is another Nancy:  girl detective Nancy Drew.  I read all of the Nancy Drew books and envied her life:  affluent lifestyle, great boyfriend, cute clothes, good looks, and an interesting life.  While I continued to admire her character, though, I grew to enjoy the Hardy Boys more.  They had better adventures than Nancy.

There are a number of other Nancys--Hanks, Sinatra, Reagan--none of whom seem to resonate with me.

Maybe I can change it!  I could do like writer Crescent Dragonwagon.  Yes, that's her real name.  No, she was not born with it; she chose it.  (Read the whole Crescent Dragonwagon story here.)  But, what would I choose?

Well, let's start with the last name first.  I often write about the Resident Dragon (RD), so what about Dragonslady?  I can be a bit grouchy, at times, so it might be corrupted to Dragon Lady.  Well, so much for that.

What else could I choose?  Reader?  Writer?  Scribe?  Procrastinator?  Wordsmith?  Any could work, but they reflect what I do, not who I am.  Maybe the first name would be easier.

Where should I start?  Something Celtic.  Somehow, Celtic music really ignites my imagination, so something Celtic.  Let's see.

Moira?  Celtic form of Mary.  Definite possibility

Fionna?  Well, I'm married to a dragon, not an orgre, so that's out.

Ann?  Hebrew for grace.  Another possibility.

Megan?  Welsh for Pearl.  Maybe too elegant for me.

Siobhan?  God is Gracious.  Another possible choice.

Maeve?  Intoxicating?  I'm closer to infuriating.

And this is infuriating.  On any given day, any of these--and none of these--names could reflect who I am.  They are no better a descriptive name than Nancy is.

Descriptive name.

Why do I need a descriptive name?  A rose by any other name still smells as sweet, right?

Maybe the problem isn't the name.  Maybe I'm dissatisfied with the name's current owner.

Oh, bother.

Just when I think I have things figured out, I realize that I'm still pretty self-unaware.

Double bother.

So, let's go back to the beginning and take off the blinders.  I don't like some of the things I'm doing right now.  Some of them are not who I am anymore.  Some of them I'm doing because I've "always done them," but I think it may be time to pass along some of those things.

To everything there is a season, and, for me, this will be the season of change.  And, oddly enough my name isn't really bothering me anymore..

So, what's going on with you?


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