Thursday, October 9, 2003

A rose by any other name

My name is Mary Theresa.  My Mom named me in advance because it was her dream for me to become a Nun. Mary was never really truly mine.  At the Catholic High School I attended there was Mary Anne, Mary Ellen, Mary Alice, Mary Beth, Mary Jane, Mary, Mary, Mary and Mary.  You could yell "MARY" in the hallway and half the girls would turn to answer.

Why couldn't I have had my own personalized name?  Exclusive to me, giving me a different sense and significance of self.  And to others!

In my day dreams, I named myself dramatic, romantic monikers. 

I named my daughter, Bridget...Theresa. Bridget congures up images of sexy French girls even though its actually the female patron saint of Ireland.  Not to mention the name of my Great Grandmother.

I was stumped when Bridget was born, so certain she was going to be a male.  23 years ago, when dinosaurs roamed the earth, you were not given the opportunity of knowing in advance the sex of your child. It was "PUSH, PUSH, PUSH.....its a GIRL!"  I was so surprised.  The entire last six months of carrying her, she had squirmed, kicked, and wiggled around so much I knew she was a boy. 

My Mom named Bridget. I was clueless and half heartedly came up with Nicole.  My mother blanched and said "That's not an Irish name." And so, she became Bridget after a woman born in the 1800's.

No mistake was made, for she is most certainly a Bridget.  Even the name rolls off the tongue and tickles the lips.  It can be drawn out as in, "Brrrrrriiiidggggettttt..." or short and harsh "Bidgt". I like the way there are numerous ways to spell Bridget, therefore giving her the latitude to change her mood and/or her sense of self with the spelling.

I was one of six children. My moniker has always been "The oldest", and when my sisters were born, "The oldest girl". Now as my parents age, I still am the oldest and introduced as, "My oldest daughter".  I never had a nick name like some other Mary's I knew.  No Mollie or Missy or Sissy for me...just plain, Nun-like Mary.

I love the Internet for the wonderful pleasure of naming myself and giving myself great nicknames like HighwayStar, Drama Queen and AlphaWoman.

Yet, a rose by any other name.......

1 comment:

freeepeace said...

i can relate! i can relate! i can relate! irish, catholic. many mary's in my family (yes, even a mary theresa). my nana (a mary) had 8 daughters! my mom was the last so she lucked out in the name department. i chose bridget as my confirmation name (when was that... 8th grade?) because my first 3 years of brainwashing... er... i mean, elementary school were spent at st. bridget's school. beauiful name.