Who knew so much trouble came from just a few little letters? There are dozens, dare I say hundreds, of guides on how to plan a wedding, hundreds more on how to manage the home. But if there is a guide on overcoming the obstacles of changing your name I have yet to hear of it. I certainly underestimated the task.
First there’s Social Security, then the financial accounts, work, insurance companies, credit cards and cell phone bills. And then there’s fixing the mistakes – a new check card came back for “Kate Reyes” – a pet peeve of mine that occurs often. I’m trying to stay organized and aggressive in the quest for surname switcheroo. But today ….. ohhhh today … there was the DMV.
I don’t think anyone likes going to the DMV – except for maybe 16-year-olds going in for the first time to get their license, but then the novelty wears off. My husband drove me – as we discovered late last night that my car battery had died. I’ll spare you the details and just let you know that I was denied the name change since I only have a copy of the marriage license (the official hasn’t arrived yet). Apparently, the copy was sufficient for the Social Security Office, but not good enough for the DMV.
But there was one obstacle to moniker modification I didn’t expect – the amount of resistance I received by making the decision. Numerous people have teased me – saying that they thought I was a “modern woman”. Quite a few others expressed shock. Still others have complained at the confusion it has caused. My husband, by the way had no choice in the matter – he didn’t ever bring it up. And when I told him that I was going to take his name he said “thank you.”
Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s perfectly acceptable for a woman to keep her maiden name for whatever reason – but when did it become so out-moded to take the husband’s name? I considered keeping it, although I’ll admit it would have been for selfish reasons on my part. After all, I do feel like there’s a small loss in my identity. The Kate Keyes that friends and family watched grow up is no more – wiped off the map, doesn’t exist. But in the end it all came down to the fact that I have a brother and as long as he’s around to carry on the family name, I’ll take the switch. My vain attempt to hold on to my past will just have to be supressed.
My husband picked me up a little after noon for lunch today. It’s his day off. He got me lunch and drove me home to pick up my car, which he had spent the morning fixing. And when we got home, I noticed that he had also washed my car. And then I remembered why I’m changing my name.
My new married name isn’t even that different – from Keyes to Kealey – see they even share the same letters.