A to Z Challenge: M and N are for…

Whoops. I did it again. Seriously working til midnight is throwing off my entire writing… 

M and N are for My Name… 

My name hasn’t always been my name. 

When I was little, I went through two separate name phases. Barbie, when I was 3 or such- because well Barbie. Then later, Melanie, after my favorite Spice Girl; I was older and knew better but it didn’t stop me. 

But other than that I loved my (birth) name. It was different but beautiful. I longed to be famous for the simple fact of having an original name. No one would mistaken me as “so and so”. It sounded like a fancy bottle of wine or something. But it also came with a downside I grew to hate…

Having an one of a kind name meant constantly correcting people on how to pronounce it. I learned that children can say it flawlessly because they don’t think about it. It meant constantly explaining it, the meaning, where it’s from, all that excessive nonsense. It also meant NEVER BEING ABLE TO COME HOME WITH ONE OF THOSE CUTE NAME SOUVENIRS! And really, that hurt as a kid. 

Well are you going to share your birth name? 

Demajia… (Da-maj-ah)

Named after my mom’s friend in the army (and that’s all the details I know). When googled, it was Chinese and something I believe meaning “dreaming downpour”. And yes I googled it again with no luck of finding that site I originally found. 

Now I still love my name. And I still think it’s beautiful… but as I said I grew tired of the constant questions about it. Tired of having to correct people all the time. Tired of wondering if I didn’t get a job because of how it looked on paper. Yes name profiling is real. So I considered changing it. 

I took on a few nicknames, none I really liked. And then in the weeks leading up to my nuptials, I decided I would just legally change it. Figured since I would be changing my last name,  I might as well do it all in one sweep. 

So I did. I got married and went from Demajia to Demi. I even kept my middle name, which no I will not be sharing but just know it sounds similar to a fancy wine. The first few days were heaven not being asked. And then slowly the “are you named after Demi Moore” started but hey I can deal with that. A few have asked if it’s short for anything and to avoid that big whole explanation I say no. It’s easier for my doctor to call me, no longer do I hear “this message is for Emma’s mom.” 

Everything was going well… except that my mother was absolutely infuriated that I shortened my name. She, as someone with a fairly easy to pronounce name, did not understand how tiresome it can become correctly everyone. Or how said it was never being able to buy my name on something. I tried to make her feel better by saying I kept my middle name but she wasn’t having it. In fact, she still blatantly calls me by my birth name… just because. Even though I legally changed it. But hey whatever I answered to it most of my life I’ll still answer to it. 

Which brings me to a separate but still relevant point. When it came time to pick out baby names, I had already had a list and believe me Emma was actually no where on it, I had a list of names that were and weren’t acceptable. There would be no colors, seasons, locations, meadows, food… nothing that would leave my kid being bullied or black balling their future. And aside from R, my mother was the only one giving me grief about baby names. Well… in the end, we settled for Emma. It was not a first pick for me as I said… and for some reason I stupidly agreed to let R have the final decision on the name. And then even though we had discussed alternatives, when the doctor said it was a girl and did we have names picked out I just blurted Emma. Sure we could have still changed it but I guess at that point I took it as a sign that was supposed to be her name. 

But I have grown to love it. It’s classic. Timeless. And even though it stays in the Top baby names list, I haven’t actually ran into more than 1 or 2 other Emma’s. Of course that may change when she starts school but oh well. Even looking in my sister’s graduation program I didn’t see any… and I never have to worry about her missing out on name souvenirs or being name profiled. 

Does anyone else have an unique name or did anyone change theirs for similar reasons?? 


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