There is no rule book when it comes to reunions. I just have to keep in the forefront of my mind that I am a child and didn’t ask for any of this. I didn’t ask for Marion to adopt out her child and I didn’t ask to be adopted by a different family. The grown ups made these choices. My mom really made me mad because 2-3 weeks ago she said she didn’t care if I changed my middle name. I took that at face value because that’s what she said – I wasn’t even thinking about doing that really – not at the stage. So when she just volunteered that it was a sense of relief.
So last night, I tell her that I am giving consideration to changing my middle and last name. She basically flips out acting like she never said she didn’t care and how could I /why do I need to change my name. And then she said something about my “new age” thinking and that she doesn’t understand it. Then she had the nerve to say “well you can do that when I’m dead.”
It made me really angry. First of all – no – absolutely not. I am not putting my life on hold for 30 more years. This is my call, and I told her in a slightly nicer tone than the one I have right now.
I don’t like it when people act brand new about things, especially not something like this. I think a renaming could be very special since the agency pretty much took away whatever connection I would have to Marion.
However, it’s the three of us now so I would hope my mom could be a part of it. No matter how strange that seems to folks. It doesn’t seem strange to me at all. I don’t feel the need to “pick” or rank anything or anyone. Logistically I think it will be hard for 3 people to decide on a name but I think it can be done. Or I could just pick my own name and not involve either one of them. Or I could just keep things the same.
I had a chat with Maria about this and I came to the conclusion that this would be one of the first times in my life where I have actually had the opportunity to make my own decision, and where that decision would be different than what my parents wanted me to do. I guess this is what it feels like to actually be grown, and to make choices for yourself independent of whether or not it will hurt your parents feelings. It’s a lot of work.
Maria actually mentioned that she didn’t initially understand why I would want to/consider changing my name. It took me a while to explain it — that people are constantly evolving and VJ is a person with 1 brother and 1 sister, and I am now a person that has 3 brothers and 2 sisters and 2 mothers and I would like a name (esp. a last name) that reflects that uniqueness. I also realized that folks are not in my situation. They are privileged (and probably take for granted) the fact that everything is already aligned in their life. They have a name that was given to them by the person who birthed them, which is the same person who raised them. I cannot/will not/and refuse to be criticized by people who never have been and never will be in my situation.
I glanced over at the calendar next to me at the studio. It says “treat every moment as you last. it is not preparation for something else.” I really do try to live this way. I don’t want to make my mother angry or hurt her feelings but at the same time, I have to move forward with what is important to me.
I have always considered myself as indecisive, not quite knowing what I want. And I suppose in some ways I feel that subtle shift. I see this is various aspects — like I haven’t been able to decorate my house the way I want to because I have a hard time deciding what it is that I like. I have struggled to be decisive about things – charging forward in one direction without stopping to ask everyone their opinion about what they think I should do. I feel done with that.