Thursday, March 09, 2006

Identity Crisis Part Two

All my life I've been Jana Jones*. Well that is until I married Colin. The great last name debate is only a challenge in my psyche. Colin really didn't care if I kept my name, so I decided to just add his name on and become Jana Jones Smith. This way I could still be Jana Jones in my professional life and Jana Smith to our families. It seemed like the modern woman thing to do. I take great pride in having multiple personalities.

The problem is my brain can't wrap itself around the idea of Jana Smith. I don't know who she is. I don't know why the previous generation of women had no problem with this transition. They just didn't question the way it was. Maybe we have too many choices today. Maybe we are just waiting longer in our lives and therefore have discovered who we are by the time we need to make the adjustment from being an individual to becoming a unified couple.

It seems to me that in order for this surname change to be easy, I would have to be in one of the following categories:

Have strong traditionalist values.
Hate my last name.
Have issues with my childhood or person as a whole.

I have always believed that your name does affect your personality. You can't tell me that you'd be the same person today if your name was Gertrude.

The reason that this is an issue now is because Strawberry is becoming associated with her name. She likes to call me Mommy Smith. At first I thought, well that can't be me because that's Colin's mom, but she wasn't born with that name either. She has however been a Smith longer than her maiden name. I did not know Colin's dad's mom, another Mommy Smith.

Hopefully time will give me a new perspective.

*Names have obviously been changed to protect our offspring. I thought about referring to Colin as Colin Farrell but that would be too distracting for me.

1 Singing the blues:

DaniGirl said...

Who knew names would be such a thorny issue?? I cried for hours on my "practice" wedding night because of the loss of my maiden name (should have been a hint of trouble ahead, don'tcha think??) Then I kept my maiden name when I married my Beloved, and we've hyphenated the kids' names, but when I'm spelling them out for the fourth time to someone, I wonder what the heck we've saddled them with!