These days I get asked a lot of questions about wedding plans. How are they going? Are you getting nervous? What are your colors? Will you wear a veil? What does your dress look like? (Answers: Fine [never tell the truth to the well-meaning person, they really don't want to hear it]; Heck yes; Blue and yellow and pink [long story]; Heck no; and White, with beading. I think it has a train and no, it will probably be bustled the whole time because I hate trains.)
Context clues may give you the idea that I'm a bit of a non-traditional girl. That would be the correct idea.
I also get asked, quite a lot lately, what my name will be after I get married. This has always been a no-brainer for me, since before I began my dating years: I'm keeping my last name when I get married. I like it. It connects me to these amazing people who are my family and who are strong and amazing and it's my name.
I (obviously) have nothing against Nick or his family, but his name is not my name. I want to keep my name and pass it on to our kids (our current plan for possible kids is to hyphenate the two last names. This plan may change, as plans do). Part of the reason for this has to do with my family tree. I've been on-again, off-again researching my family tree and when I go back far enough (300 years and up) the women's names start to disappear from the records -- it's just Thomas Browne married ________ and had Thomas, John, and Francis Browne (no visible daughters). I've always felt frustrated when I couldn't find out who these women were, like I was missing out on a connection between that person and myself. Maybe that's a little foolish, because there's no way of knowing what these people were like, but I like the idea of some traits being passed down through families the way names are (and are.they.ever in some branches of my family--you'd think they only knew 3 names for men and 3 for women).
My aversion to losing my own name got cemented a bit further the other day. There is a patron at the library, a lady of maybe 70-ish years old, and the name on her library card record is (and I'm changing the acutal name here, of course) Mrs Richard VanLandingham. Generations are different in how they view these things, I know, but man--to not even have one's own name on one's own library card, that's not for me.
And I'm not calling out any woman who has changed her name to her husband's when she married him; that's her choice, and it's definitely the mainstream thing, and it's none of my business. It surprises me, when people ask and I answer, how many are taken aback by my choice and how a few even get a little defensive or stand-off-ish.
Has anyone else gotten that, or reacted that way, or have an opinion on this topic? All viewpoints welcome and respected. Comments telling me I'm a damn sinner and going to hell will be deleted. Because I know that already.