Thursday, August 14, 2008

What's in a Name?

My friends call me Terry, but my real name is Teresa. The story goes that mom wanted to call me Terry, but Dad insisted that Terry wasn’t the proper name for a girl. So, I became Teresa


For financial, legal, medical, and employment purposes I am Teresa, for everything else I am Terry. (When I was 10 and decided I was going to be a singing star, I briefly went around signing my name as Tee Tee Brown – mostly on home chalkboards. Alas, my vocal chords did not live up to Tee Tee’s name.)


My little sister called me Tissy, her toddler contraction for Terry and Sissy. Since this is the sister whose eyes I tried to poke out, I guess I’m lucky she did not call me Evil Fingers.


When I was very young, my dad would often call me Trish Kalish. He’s the only person that has ever used this particular nickname He stopped using it about the time I went to kindergarten. But when he left me on the steps of Shepherd College's Gardner Hall at the beginning of my freshman year, his parting words to me were, “Bye, Trish Kalish.” I still get all teary -eyed thinking about it.


I have signed my emails and letters, “TS,” “Ohio Terry,” “Yo Momma” and to one of my stepsons, “Your Evil Stepmother.” (Just say YES?)


One of my favorite names is “Grandma Terry,” or even better, “Maw T-U, ” which is the name that my eldest grandson , now four, bestowed on me when he was beginning to talk I couldn’t have been prouder or happier with a name.


I’ve answered to Sloanie (derived from my maiden name Sloan), Terry Lynn, Babe and even, “Hey, You.” A hundred years from now, should anybody be interested, I wonder which of my names will survive? When they start poking around in the ashes of my life, will they uncover its secret? That it has been my good fortune to drink deeply from the jug of familial love and that my thirst was quenched


Until Next Time – Happy Ancestral Digging!

Written for the 54th Edition of The

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