Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A post about my name...

My name is Traci M. Smith... if you google Traci M. Smith, or look it up on myspace, facebook, linkedin, etc., you will see I'm not the only one. There are a lot of Traci Smiths. Still, I like my name and in these 30 years of life have become quite attached to it.
Here are some reasons I like my name:
  • I've had it my whole life
  • It's easy to remember
  • Five letters in the first name, five letters in the last name
  • Easy to spell
That's about it... I've had my name my whole live, and I never changed it. Not even when I got married. I didn't change it for a variety of reasons, including (but not limited to) the following:
  • Nobody (I repeat: NOBODY) whose opinion mattered to me cared one hoot whether I changed my name or not (not my friends, not my parents, not my mentors... nobody)
  • I know many intelligent, successful women who have kept their maiden names, and I admire them.
  • My husband is from a culture where women don't change their names
  • My husband said that he didn't care whether I changed my name or not
  • I feel that my husband and I are able to demonstrate our love to one another and to the world in so many ways, no one would dare to believe that my decision to keep my name had anything to do with an unwillingness to commit my heart, mind, and soul to the marriage.
So I kept my name. And I haven't thought too much about it, really... with the exception of one or two BIZARRE incidents.

1. Someone (granted, I think he's at least 75, probably 80) asked if the fact that I didn't change my name meant I was legally married. (Um. Yes, in fact, I'm very married.)

2. Someone flipped out about how to address an invitation to my husband and I. I mean, seriously flipped out.

So, as a public service announcement, and "for the record" (so to speak). Let me say the following: I'm happy with my name. I'm happy with my decision not to legally change it. I do not discount the possibility that if children come into my life that I might (informally) use my husband's name as a last name. I am proud of my women friends who keep their names. I am proud of my women friends who take their husbands' names. I am proud of my women friends who hyphenate their names. To me, a woman's choice to change her name (or not) is personal. It doesn't really affect me. It's none of my business, really. I call my friends by their names. End. Of. Story.

Finally, to those of you who are baffled and bewildered about how to address correspondence to my husband and me, let me say the following:

1. We will graciously accept your mail, however you choose to address it. We don't micromanage our friends.

2. If you are asking how we would prefer to receive mail, the following would be our preference:

Detroit, MI ZIP


Detroit, MI ZIP


Mr. Elias LASTNAME and the Rev. Traci LASTNAME
Detroit, MI ZIP


Elias and Traci
Detroit, Mi ZIP

This concludes the post about my name.

(or so I thought)

My good friend M pointed out that in all of my examples I put E's name first. If I'm all about "equality" and such, why didn't I put my name first? Good Point, M. Feel free to address the mail Traci & Elias. or Reverend Traci Smith & Mr. Elias Whatshisname. :)

1 comment:

amazedlife said...

YESS! I made the blog! ;)