For 29 years my name was Amanda and though is it a common name, I had grown quite accustomed to it. I realized that I would have to say goodbye to my given name the minute that my daughter was born. The doctor who had delivered my precious baby placed her in my arms and said “Congratulations, Mom”.
From that moment forward everyone that was associated with my children in any way called me by this new strange forename. I had expected my children to call me “Mom”, but I had not expected to hear it from pediatricians, gym class teachers, hair stylists, or my husband. My entire identity is now irrevocably intertwined with this little person, but do you really have to take my name, too?
I had been steadfastly working my way through the steps to “quit” my old name when something strange happened to me. I was pushing my girls through the grocery store in a cart while browsing the aisles and I was doing my best to ignore all distractions. A tiny voice kept repeating itself with an increase in volume and insistence that only occurs when being ignored “Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, MOMMY!” I broke out of my self-induced trance and replied loudly “YES, honey!”, but when I snapped my head around to look at my children, all was silent.
There was a little girl beside us in the aisle tugging on her mother’s pants who was the source of the repetitive chatter, who had also become silent and was now staring at me. I turned crimson and shared a feeble smile with her mother. I have now successfully beaten my addiction and take solace in the fact that there are many others with the same name, but who are completely different people.
-The Artist Formerly Known As Amanda