What’s in a name: Part 2

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The legal name change is taking FOREVER!

Forever ago it seems like, I posted about how Marianne and I are both changing our last names so they can be the same. At this point, we’re still waiting on the Feds to get back to us about the fact that we’re really good people and haven’t committed any crimes…also known as a background check.

We even asked people to support us monetarily in this journey and I sincerely thanks those of you who gave us $237 of the $375 we were asking for (technically the link to give is still active, click here to find it. in the process of moving to Greenville almost everything has cost us more than we expected so the money we raised to cover our name change is one less thing to worry about.

So, even though the name is not official yet, I started my new job at the daily newspaper here and have decided to use my “new” name professionally…on my byline, on business cards, when answering the phone, when introducing myself. Can I just say…

It’s.So.Weird.

Not good or bad, although I really do like that I’m Katherine Ayers (totally still introducing myself as Katie so no worries!), it’s just something I have to get used to. More than once I’ve had to correct myself when calling for someone and to hear me say my own new name out loud sounds like I’m speaking about someone else. The only downside is that when people at the paper ask me why I’ve got a different name than the one I interviewed with, I’ve found it easier to say “that was maiden name and to be consistent for our readers I want to use this one before I technically get married” than to explain the whole process of what I’m actually doing…and then people assume I’m straight. That’s also a downside to “passing” as straight, something else I’ve had to get used to as I’ve started growing my hair longer and wearing women’s clothes to work.

I didn’t have any of the angst that I’ve heard some newly married women talk about when taking their husband’s last name, maybe because M and I are both changing our names and it doesn’t feel so heteronormative and patriarchal to me. I’m actually a big fan of taking this step because it feels like M and I are growing into our new life together as she will be using her name once school starts.

In other, unrelated news, M and I made it to Greenville two Sundays ago and are finally settling in to a routine. After five years of having almost opposite schedules, it’s been really nice to have her around more consistently. The schedule will become even more set once she gets into her school routine which starts in about two weeks.

As always, you all will be the first to know when there’s any movement on the legal name change.

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