Akay’s comment from yesterday set me thinking. I did see the furore caused by Mr Sanjay Dutt and his new wife Manyata. I saw this post by Mad Momma which in turn linked to Goofy Mama and a whole slew of posts debating this issue. I concur wholeheartedly with the spirited women and am proud to put this badge up. I don’t think I can say anything that has not been said already.
However, this comment set my thought train on an altogether different track. Never did I feel the importance of my name than at the time my marriage was fixed with the eminently like-able K. As the wedding day neared, I gave much thought to the whole concept of changing my name. I felt the idea abhorrent. As much as I was getting to know K, I realized nothing could compel me to give up my identity of the past 25 years. I was born G Lakshmi and I would be G Lakshmi all my life I thought vehemently. My dad (whom I absolutely adore) is someone I looked up to. Carrying his name as part of mine was a honor I would not give up without a fight I thought to myself. I admit I had often wondered while in high school why I only had my dad’s name as my surname and why my mom’s name was never part of it. I consoled myself that both their names started with G and so I could use it to mean both their names. Mad Momma explains this feeling well. I was nodding my head all the way through her post.
Anyways, back to the time around my wedding, the drama I anticipated over my not changing my name never happened. Nobody gave it a second thought. My FIL asked once and I said it was a hassle changing my passport and such and the topic was never discussed. K couldn’t care less about me changing or not changing my name. At least it has never been raised to this day. Just as he loves his identity of being his parents’ child so also he realizes it is important for me to retain my identity.
With my dad passing away not too long ago, my name is now a souvenir of sorts. Each time I see my name in full I feel pride. I feel love. I feel the warmth of my dad’s affection over me. His name is something of a guardian angel for me. A hook to the past and a bridge to the future. Over time, I may sometimes feel inclined to include K’s name with mine but there will always be an “and” in the middle. We are a couple. It is him and I.