Friday, December 18, 2009

what's in a name?

As family legend has it, back when my Mom was pregnant with me she just knew she was going to have a girl and she would name her Shannon Marie. Shannon because she had gone to school with a girl named Shannon and thought the name was beautiful. And that's how I became the (half) Polish girl with the Irish name. Marie - well I'm not sure where that came from, but having conducted my own unscientific research over the years it seems like every little girl in the free world is given the nickname Marie. Seriously, I can name a dozen people I personally know who's middle name is Marie, just off the top of my head. I'm sure I could come up with more if I put some thought into it and conducted some more research. How about you? Is your middle name Marie?

So while my Mom loved my name... of course she did, she named me..... her Mother did not. She thought for sure I would get Shannon the cannon (I didn't) and actually referred to me as Marie when I was a baby. Luckily by the time I was only enough that it mattered she had resigned herself to using my first name. I wonder if my Grandma would laugh now if she knew that I do get called Cannon quite regularly now. Mike's stepdad, Papa Old Beard, is the kinda guy who likes to give people nicknames and mine from him is Cannon. He calls me that exclusively and has for nearly 20 years. It's not something that bothers me, but that could be due to the fact that he's the only one who calls me that.

For most of my life I've been Shan. I introduce myself as Shannon and I sorta expect to be called that unless we're good friends. Maybe expect isn't the right word, but I always think it's a little odd when someone I've just met calls me Shan. Of course I say that, but I put myself out there all over the interwebs as Shan. If I'm really being truthful it's probably more to do with the personal connection I feel with that person. I can be a hard nut to crack, I'm aware of that. I really don't want to be, but I'm just so shy I can't be any other way. I really do hate it though.

And now at the ripe old age of 36 I'm Shanny. I'm not even sure where or who that started with, but it's growing popularity. To my Jersey girls I'm Shanny. To my "little" girls at work I'm Shanny. Even Mike will slip in the odd Shanny now and then. I like it. Sure it may be a nickname more suited to when I was, oh say, six, but I'll take it now. I kinda feel like this is a whole new phase in my life and I got a new name to go along with it. Things are good.

What's the story with your name?

*Thanks to Dani for the post idea


Merry said...

It's always cool when you can trace where your name came from.

My name story is pretty easy. My name is Merry because I was born 3 days before Christmas. I love it but it annoys me because everyone spells my name wrong ALL THE TIME! My middle name is Elizabeth which was my mom's best friend's middle name.

If we ever meet in person, please don't be offended if I call you Shan. That's what I think of you as & I can't imagine calling you Shannon. :)

Cathy said...

I'm in my forties, am trying to figure out why my parents named me Cathy. That is my full given name;I can't tell you how many times I've had to explain that while filing out forms, even going to a taping of The Prices Right. But I'm not the only Cathy in the family, which is strange to me, it's not like it's a family name. Her cousin had a daughter a few years older than me who was a Kathy Sue, and we were all close growing up, so of course I was called Cathy Lynn by all my great aunts. In school and now at work I'm Cathy R., there are days when I just want to be Cathy, not Cat, Cath or Cathy R.

Karen said...

I have my name just because my parents liked it. As for middle names, I think I have the next most common name of our generation - Ann.

Mommy Project said...

I won't go into the whole painful saga of my name right now (you already know the deal), but I just wanted to say, for the record, that I called you Shanny first. Well, at least before I ever heard anyone else call you that... So I'm gonna go ahead and claim it. I call you that, cuz I like you. Anyone I like gets the long e sound added to their name. :)

p.s. My middle name is Mary. Close!

Mommy Project said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shan said...

Merry - Well of course you'd call me Shan, all my good friends do:)

Cathy - I know what you mean. Our Abby is just an Abby although lots assume it's short for Abigail. The girls each have three names, so there's lots to choose from when they're older if they'd like.

Karen - Yep another popular one. And I have to say I have yet to meet a Karen I didn't like.

Normie - Okay, it's yours. And Maya's first middle name is Mary.

Sam said...

Well my parents couldn't agree on a name but then decided to name me Samantha after Bewitched. Anne for my middle name since this was my dads best friends wife.

Ironic as it is, my best friend was named Bobby Jo after a TV show as well.