The Life of Liz

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world. ~Anne Frank

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

What's in a name?

I've changed my name.

But don't worry, if you already knew me as Jill and can't make the switch, that's ok. But if you can change, I go by Liz now.


Actually, I've wanted to change my name for quite some time now, but it never felt like it was the right moment. Until recently.

I've never been terribly fond of the name Jill, which has the added disadvantage of being unpronouncable to non-native speakers of English. And since sometime in the next six-nine months I will be leaving the land of native speakers of English for the great abroad, I need a name people can say.

Why Liz?

Well, it is my middle name. But more than that, it was my grandmother's name. One of the reasons it never felt like a good time to make the change over was that Grandma was still using her name. A Liz of the Templin pursuasion is a lot to handle and the world maybe does not need more than one of us running around at any given time.

Grandma passed from this life to the next on Memorial day. To me, taking her name is a way to honor her life. In Italy, it is traditional to name one's child after a saint or a family member whose personal qualities one wishes the child to also exemplify...

At the memorial service, a lady I didn't know stood up and shared how her child had lived only four months, much of which was in the hospital. Every day my Grandma went and picked her up, drove her to the hospital, sat with her as long as she wanted, drove her to lunch, then back to the hospital to sit as long as she wanted. Every day. Because Grandma knew what it was like to lose a child.

...and this is what I want to exemplify. I want to be the kind of person who is fiesty and funny and unbelievably strong. I want to be the kind of person who can take a horrific personal tragedy and turn it into compassion. I want my house to be a little bit of refuge for grandchilren who need to be messy and neighbor kids who never get taken to baseball games.

I want to be a Liz.


About Me

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A brand new mom trying to navigate the crazy world of mixed families, babies, and working full time. Phew! Just writing that makes me want to lie down.


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