Me! You know what I only just realised today?
A funny thing, really!
Some of my closest friends do not even know my pet name(s).
For years and years, my hubby Pete has been calling me 'Pilau Rice!' Or just Pilau for short.
I literally can't remember a time when he hasn't called me this. When I met him at the age of 18, I felt liberated to be starting a new life away from home, and somehow as I crossed that threshold into my new life, simply calling myself P felt nicer than my actual name - Paula. So P became Pilau, thanks to my man, super organically!
The first time a playful name found me was as a kid. Me, my sister Sandi and my friend Laura (now Lola) formed a pop trio. I was the main singer -Polly Darton - and Sandi ( who spells it Sandy on paper)and Laura were 'The Groovers'. These names still fly with us - 30 years later!!!! Our style could best be described as Vic 'n' Bob meets....um.... Dolly Parton! Thinking about the 'album' we recorded and the giggle fits we had makes me laugh my head off.
And then I remembered that an old boyfriend had decided early on in his life (in primary school I think) that he did not want to be called Geoff (pretty groovy name I think) announcing confidently to his parents he wanted to be called Phil instead. His folks were cool as cucumbers and just said 'sure!'. He still goes by that name today as far as I know.
For years and years, friends have called me P or Pilau or Pilau rice, and when I meet up with my old gang, everyone calls me Pilau. It doesn't even register any more as sounding weird. And yet I don't introduce myself as Pilau to anyone now, it's kinda like a funny in-joke from bygone days that sorta stuck. But I love this pet name. It's so me!
Recently I was messing about with a friend up here in Cambs, and it turns out that her kids and hubby call her Lady Marmalade! And I love this name for her, it's great. She is a groovy mama who likes marmalade. A lot.
I have known other friends to kind of accidentally end up with different nicknames, maybe more than one in their lifetime. Most people I know seem to have a pet name of some sort.
Do you have a sweet or secret nickname dear reader? Have you consciously changed your name? Or done it be depol? Do you really hate your name? If you changed it, what did it mean to shed your old name? Was it liberating?
Maybe you have a bloggy moniker, like me, calling yourself something more exciting than your real name. Motherfunker certainly feels more fun than simply Paula. It helps me to tap into a particular aspect of my personality that I like the most - not the greasy haired, frazzled looking mama I often look like in my real life!!!! Perhaps having an online persona or name is a way of protecting yourself, retaining a little anonymity, saving something of yourself, for, well, you!
What's in a name, dear reader?