Thursday, May 7, 2015

9 Months with a New Name

I can't believe it's been nearly a year since I submitted my forms to request a legal name change! I remember rushing to almost every major government offices to change my IDs and files. I remember my schools and bank acknowledging my legal name change without hesitation and started calling me by my legal name.

Under Canadian law, it's an offense to continue using IDs with your previous name so between you and I... I haven't updated my passport yet and I've been using it to cross borders :P I'm working on it this month! That's the last official government documentation that I need to update!

I'm not going to lie - some people get confused when they find out I have a "white" surname. The first instinct is asking if I'm mixed (I even look mixed at times). I shrug it off because if I said no, it'd cause more confusion for them. For those who haven't met me but know my name and meet me after (eg. during my interview with my school), they're surprised to see a Chinese girl in front of them.

I'm not offended by it because I'm not a mixed child, I'm not married and I'm not adopted. So, naturally, the confusion and surprise of a random "white" surname is expected.

I don't tell people what I told you guys when I changed my name. I don't have to and I don't owe anyone the story. It's complicated and it's personal.

Right now, I'm happy with my name. I love my name so much. Sure there's no ancestral or historical meaning behind it. Hell, today I learned my last name is a Welish name! My "new" name flows through my tongue so naturally than my previous name did.

It's weird to see old stuff with my previous name. I still feel embarrassed when I see stuff with my old name (eg. my high school diploma).

But, regardless, I'm happy for myself. My dad isn't too thrilled (no surprise) but he's slowly accepting it. My mum has accepted it. My brother is indifferent about it. My friends are happy for me but I see their contact for me on their phone is still under my previous name. I appreciate EVERYONE that looks at my name and doesn't question anything. No questions, no surprise looks, etc.

A name is so much more than just letters string together. I make no regrets changing my name and "going back" against my family. Despite our differences, I do love them but I feel so much better with a different name :)

I wonder if I'd get the same feeling when I take my future husband's name :P

Until then, I enjoy being "JCP"!


  1. How interesting! When I was younger I wanted to change my name because there were soooo many Jessica's in my class (too funny that your name is ALSO Jessica!) But I never went through with it. The only time I changed my (last) name was when I got married. I am Mexican so my last name is very "Mexican" but after I got married my name turned very "white" lol I always joke that people must think I am a white girl when they see my name in print!


  2. Jessica is a great name! :P I grew up with a lot of Jessicas in my classes as well but they always prefer to be called "Jess" or "Jessie". I hate the name Jessie and never got called Jess until later on in my life. Nowadays, all my friends and people I work with just call me Jess rather than Jessica and it feels a little odd when someone calls me Jessica


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