1 year ago
Last edited at 9:33PM on 11/29/2012
Abigail. Biblically, father's joy, which I used to think meant that my daddy loved me, especially. In the biblical sense, though, "father" means God. Which kind of weirds me out, but differently from how the nickname Gail or the spelling Abbey weird me out. I've always been Abby. Today, I like it. Blunt, pleasant. A bee. It sounds like a question that isn't looking for an answer . . . my middle name is Clare without an i, a letter away from clear. It's my grandfather's name. Quiet, his other name is Ernest, a letter away from earnest . . . my last name is hyphenated because my parents are feminists. It’s one part German and one part “immigration-didn't-get-it-so-they-participated-in-cultural-normalization.” It is almost unique. My sisters and I, we are our name, our title . . . what’s in a name? A rose by any other name would be something else entirely, with an erased genealogy—erased associations, tongueprints forgotten like melted snow banks. What would the world be if mankind was always known as humankind, and my name anything but Abby?