9 July 2011

Your Name Here

NaBloPoMo Prompt: Do you like your name?


I love hearing the stories behind people's names, and how they feel about their name. Here's my story. Perhaps you will tell yours. 


Carly. 


No, I am not named after Carly Simon. My mom would want me to make that point clear. She likes Carly Simon, but that's not who I'm named after. 


I am named after no one. 


My mom had a few names picked out for me. My parents opted not to know the sex of the baby before I was born. Then, in the last month of pregnancy, my mom randomly stumbled upon the name Carly. She instantly loved it, told it to my dad, and he loved it, too. They had no boys names picked out. My mom was quite the confident pregnant lady, and "just knew" (her words) I was a girl. The second my parents saw me, apparently, I was the perfect Carly. 


Growing up, I would not have agreed. I wasn't particularly fond of my name. I felt like it set me apart from the Jennifers and Jessicas of the world, and I desperately wanted to be a Jennifer or Jessica. (Incidentally, I used Jennifer and Jessica as examples because they were the two most popular girls' names in 1981!)  I recall actually daydreaming about changing it on a few occasions. The outside world had two opinions about my name. They would either say "What a beautiful name!" or "Are you named after Carly Simon?"


As a kid, I never knew another Carly. 


My name is much more common these days. I never get asked anymore if I'm named after Ms. Simon. I guess that's a sign of the times. I would say that I finally grew to love my name after high school. I embraced it for the all of the reasons I hated it while growing up. It set me apart. It was different. It was me. 


Today, I appreciate my first name even more now that I married a man with a very common last name. I'm grateful to carry around a little piece of myself in a pool of hundreds of thousands of people that probably share the same last name. 


Your turn. Do you like your name? Why or why not? 



13 comments:

  1. I hear you. My name is Linda. There are very few Linda's in my age group (mid-30's). It's more common with women in their 50's. I was named after my grandma which is cool. When I was little I wanted to be Victoria (probably after Victoria Principal on Dallas).

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  2. I love love LOVE your name!

    I like my name more now than I did as a kid. I also wanted to be someone else - a Samantha, Alexandria, etc. as a kid because kids made fun of my name and it was weird - no one else had it. Like, no one. And my parents would put on the Eric Clapton record and sing the song to me and I hated the attention!

    I like it now, though I do hear it more often these days. Although I could still do without the damn singing.

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  3. I hated my name for a good long while. Jordan was never a girls name when I was growing up. I was always teased and called Michael Jordan (original, right?) I always wanted my name to be Elizabeth (so much prettier) and I never knew another Jordan (girl or boy) until high school. Then there were 3 of us (all girls) in the same class. I like it now though, I guess I just needed to grow into it. And, I get many a compliment now, which helps.
    I love the name Carly though, I think its so fun!

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  4. Ugh, see I was the "Jessica or Jennifer" of the people in my age group - Amanda. There were 5 other Amanda's in my class in high school (and there were only 79 of us total!) and I hated it! I always wished I had a more unique name!

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  5. Peggy. Hated it my whole life. I *still* haven't thoroughly embraced it because I got made fun of SO much in school. Peggy Bundy, anyone? Miss Piggy? In grade 11 when we were reading "Lord of the Flies" and had to read out loud, people would substitute my name for Piggy's character. My mom loved my name after hearing about the singer, Peggy Lee, and thought it was very pretty. Another tidbit: Originally, my parents were going to name me "Frances" but switched it to "Peggy" at the last second.

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  6. I'm not revealing my full name because revealing it would mean this pops up on Google, so now you know how uncommon my first name is!

    But oh boy, did I hate my name growing up. And occasionally I still do, because it's also spelled in a really "odd" way if you're a native English speaker. I always need to correct people. I was also taunted in school because my name is in a popular oldies song, and it also rhymes with a gazillion things. I adopted the nickname "Mo" because it's the shortened version of my name and much, much MUCH easier to pronounce and spell.

    Love your name! I think "Carly" is very cute. The name and the person. :)

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  7. lol Actually I think I found your blog through another blogger named Carly - but I'm totally going to blog about this one!

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  8. I really like your name! When I was growing up, one of my good friends was named Carly (I'm also a 1981-er). :)

    I've learned to like my name. I was named after a witch (not Sabrina the Teenage Witch who 1. wasn't around when I was born and 2. Doesn't have my name, but people ask me that all the time!) - Samantha's mischievous sister in Bewitched. I like to tell people the fun fact that I was named after a witch ;)

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  9. I love your name! I knew a girl with your name growing up and I loved it then too. She was so independent yet girly and fun and I always thought her name embodied her perfectly. And then when I found out your name it made me feel the same about you. It's an awesome name :)

    I like my name. My mom named me after the song... which is actually quite depressing since the guy picks the ocean instead of her in the end- but it's different and sometimes random strangers will sing it to me when we first meet lol

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  10. Carly, I actually found out about NaBloPoMo through you, and your post inspired me to think about my own name as well! In short: I have a complicated relationship with my name, but I too am learning to embrace it more.

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  11. @RK: I'm happy to hear my post inspired you! Thanks for reading!

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  12. I've only met one Carly in real life, so far.... My parents were planning a major move, and a family friend said "Oh, my friend Carly lives in that town -- you should email with any questions." So my mom and Carly carried on an email correspondence for several weeks and became quite friendly.

    One day, Carly called to follow up on something-or-other from their emails. And after the call, my dad came running into my room with shocking news ... "You won't believe it! Carly is ... A MAN!" All that time, we had assumed so completely that Carly was a woman, that I couldn't even process the news. My first reaction was, "You mean, like she had a sex change?" Nope. Actual man.

    And that is my own Carly story.

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  13. i love finding out the reasoning and history that come from someone's name. and carly is a very pretty name :) i actually know 2 other carlies! i'm glad you like it.

    my name and nickname are quite uncommon that i found it weird growing up, especially when it was mispronounced. i was friends with the jennifers and nicoles and wondered what it would be like if my name was common and easier to spell. but around high school i embraced it and now i love it :)

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