Navel gazing

But also answering questions I have often been asked over the years.

Lemme see… No I have never changed my birth name. It is my name. I use my birth name and the GG’s somewhat interchangeably. My birth name is my official name. It’s the one on my driver’s license and financial accounts and paychecks and tax forms. I wholeheartedly supported giving my kids the GG’s name. I used the GG’s name informally all the years I dealt with the kids’ schools and extracurricular activities. I used it for all of my volunteer “jobs” except when I had to sign something official. Once an elementary school PTO prez rather timidly asked me which name I wanted to be called. I understood his hesitation because this can be a sticky issue on the politically progressive Planet Ann Arbor. I thought about it for a split second and said, “You can call me Mouse’s Mom if you want” and that immediately defused the issue. I know a lot of people stress about this kind of thing and I know of women who have changed their name back and forth multiple times to accommodate whatever winds they thought were blowing them around. Not me. I yam who I yam and I love being part of the cFam but at the bottom of it all I yam Fin. And no, my once somewhat conservative parents were not particularly happy about my name decision but we’ll go there some other day.

Retaaaar? Me? Why? I love my job. They pay me well and they treat me with respect. I love driving over to Cubelandia (and it’s an easy zen-type commute [usually]) but if the driving is bad (snow) or I have a cold and am not too sick to work but don’t want to spread my germs around or I want to go up north to hang out at the moomincabin in the summer, I can telecommute. And when I do drive over to Cubelandia, there’s no one sitting around hovering over a time clock waiting for me to punch in. Why would I want to quit? I have had a different career trajectory than a lot of folks. I quit working [outside the home 😛] when my kids were in elementary school and did volunteer work for 14 years. I didn’t really want to quit forever but I wasn’t sure how to make my way back into the work force. In fact there were isolated moments when I agonized about that. It’s pretty hard to make a five year plan or whatever when you don’t know what you want to do when you grow up. In the end, I totally fell backwards into the career I have now.

I thought there was a third question but I can’t remember what it is. Probably something about the dern yooperland but I can’t think what so we won’t go there tonight.

P.S. The snow in the pic is from yesterday morning. That dusting of snow completely melted by about noon yesterday and today was dry and sunny.

2 Responses to “Navel gazing”

  1. Jay Says:

    I go by a variety of names. Birth, chosen, combinations and co-workers names too. I answer to most, usually without correcting.
    The funniest occurrence was when I had called an agency for help with a local community issue. They said I needed to speak with a person named my first name plus my husband’s last name. I thought they meant me! A few confusing moments passed before I realized there was a person with that exact name.

  2. Margaret Says:

    My hyphenated name has caused some issues. If I had it to do over again, I would keep my birth name. Ashley has done so, although I’m not sure what they’ll do when/if they have children. If you enjoy your work, that’s a definite bonus! I loved teaching and miss it, but education was and is going in directions that I can’t support or be part of, thus I’m glad I retired when I did.

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