How many of you ladies out there remember doodling and practicing writing and signing your name…with the last name of the boy you liked at the time?
I remember doing this very early on, maybe as early as second or third grade, and continuing on, even through college. I couldn’t wait to get married and change my last name.
My maiden name, Favello, isn’t the easiest to pronounce, though from what I’m told, it was much more difficult back in Italy! Apparently, a few syllables were dropped when the Favello family came to the United States.
Now, I am a Julius. Even though I’ve only been a Julius for a few short months, it’s pretty rare to have someone mess that one up, though I finally got a comment today that my husband got all the time, “It makes me think of Orange Julius (a fast-food restaurant chain).”
I always thought I would be so excited about changing my name, until it came time to do it. Aside from the hassle of trying to get all the correct paperwork filed with federal and state agencies, I had to contact every financial institution I have an account with, every utility company that provides service to our apartment, every organization I am associated with, and every subscription I receive to change my name. That takes time and contrary to popular belief, you can’t even change your name right away! You have to wait until you get your marriage certificate back from the county recorders office (for Los Angeles, it was about 6-8 weeks).
But, it wasn’t the time and energy I had to put into changing my name that took the wind out of my name-changing sails. It was strange. A feeling I hadn’t felt before. Almost like I’m not who I used to be anymore. I realized that as annoying as it was on the first day of school when almost every teacher would struggle with my name, I liked Favello. It was unique, different. I liked people asking if I’m Italian. It was easy to identify my heritage (except when a handful of people mistake it for being a Hispanic last name and pronouncing the “ll” as a “y”).
Don’t get me wrong…I love being married and I really was excited when I got my new license with “Julius” neatly typed next to my more mature photograph. But as a few weeks have gone by and my new credit, membership, and insurance cards have come in the mail and I slowly transition my wallet from Katie Favello to Katie Julius, I feel a bit of a loss. I feel like I’m leaving someone behind and becoming someone new. But at the same time, I know I that being a Julius will give me some of the most amazing adventures and opportunities of my life – namely being a wife and a mother. But, I will still always be a Favello.
I have duality of emotions about this whole name change thing. Much like I feel like I have a dual identity. Favello. Julius.