Are you going to change your name?

I’ve been married been for half a year now. Does that mean I am no longer a newlywed? Well newlywed or not, I have to admit that in the past six months since the wedding, I have become a full-time procrastinator. A blissfully-married procrastinator, I might add. For example, it took me more than three months to get my thank-you notes out, I’ve opened only a fraction of our wedding gifts and have yet to book our honeymoon trip to Italy this summer. Wedding planning burnout got the best of me. But I am a happy wife, so happy I want to soak up every minute with my husband (I haven’t gotten used to calling him that yet).

Ever since I got engaged and especially now that I am married, I have been asked more times than I can count, “Are you going to change your name?” I always planned on changing my name, but to be honest, I am conflicted. Family is important to me and I want to have the same last name as my husband and our future children (no I’m not pregnant, tired of being asked that, too). I want to see Mr. and Mrs. addressed on our mail, and now that I have this opportunity to change my name I am stuck with this hard truth: the family name ends with me, and this isn’t the way it was supposed to be.

My brother was supposed to carry this name on and his children after that. It’s more than just a name, it’s a reminder life continues to move on without my brother in it. It’s been six years since Evan’s suicide and while there are moments when his absence is harshly obvious, like my wedding or the holidays, there are times when I’m surprised to find bits and pieces of grief buried deep in my heart and mind. And I can’t avoid this grief any longer. Just writing about it here helps me sort through my thoughts and understand what matters most to me.

So am I going to change my name? Yes I will because family is important to me – both the family I’m born in to and the family I create – and I want our name to be one of the ways which my husband and I bond our family. Life moves on and I want to move with it.

P.S., you can check out our beautiful wedding photos on the photographer’s blog.

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