Tuesday, June 30, 2009

A Dying Breed

Finding myself newly married has been its own adventure these past four months. It is still very novel to say, "my husband". When I hear D say, “my wife,” I almost stop to look around for some middle aged woman with wrinkles and a bad attitude. Then I realize he's talking about me and I look pretty dang good and I’m pretty dang happy.

Living with a new last name has not been such a seamless transition. I am in the process of purchasing a url for my freelance business and am leaning towards amymaillet.com. The thing is: I don’t feel like Amy Maillet. I feel like Amy Cornish with a side of Maillet. Who knew my name change would cause such an identity crisis? It is my future but what about my past? All those things Amy Cornish lived seem to fade off the charts and become something certain people “remember when”. Remember Amy Cornish?

It’s not that I have accomplished so much in my life that I need to hold on to Cornish; rather it’s a deep breed affinity for the name and the people who came before me and bestowed it on me. My ancestors, yes, but really my grandparents, my dad and his brothers and sister. People who I see rarely but feel for deeply in my heart. Good, kind-hearted, fun loving people that don’t need much but enjoy what they have. That is what I feel when I think of "Cornish". It has always been positive.

Strange too is the consideration that people I meet now will probably never know the last name I carried for 33 years. My kids will ask about it like a trivia fact. My sisters will probably all have other alias’. Six girls and no trace of the Cornish name, only the curves of our cheeks and the lightness of our personality will give it away. It is like a dying breed: someday there will be a search for cave drawings and signs of what was once a group of people bound together. We will be dispersed in the world and hidden by the society around us. We can be traced and identified only by digging under the veils of new last names.

Last night after about the 50th url suggestion and D growing weary of the conversation, I asked him if he would feel comfortable buying AndyCornish.com? He stopped and rolled that around in his mouth and didn't like the taste very much. So this name change business is not just me. It’s like rerouting a river or having a new paint color in your bedroom, it takes some getting used to. I’m not even saying Maillet is a bad thing. My name sounds so much prettier these days with the fade of the French “let”. Since it flows better now, I feel some strange validation that I made the right decision marrying this guy. Funny, I know, and there's no real weight to the sentiment other than it’s one of those nuggets so close to my heart. And Cornish is not gone…it’s there in the middle but I refuse to be a hyphenater or a double-namer. If I’m going to do it, I’m going to do it whole.

No comments:

Post a Comment