I've pushed aside the very basic practical considerations: given that applying for removal of my Green Card conditions, proving the bona fide nature of what was my marriage, and then looking towards (all being well) going for US citizenship, the paperwork aspect of the task doesn't intimidate me at all. There's plenty of company for one extra form or clause in the divorce decree, and I'm very well versed in contacting the DMV, Social Security Office, and all the utility companies to change details like this. According to Jackie Pilossoph, author of blog 'Divorced Girl Smiling', it's not actually all that much of a hassle anyway, either.
The reasons why I might do it are mostly pretty obvious:
- I love my family very much, and I always loved being a Rogerson. Being an 'official' part of that group again would give me great joy and satisfaction.
We're quite good.
- Taking my old name back is a form of independence that may make me feel freer to continue my life as a single, self-sufficient woman under her own name.
- The name is also shared by several other (albeit more distant) fantastic family members, who I again identify and celebrate being connected with.
- The name itself suits my shorter first name and total lack of middle name, if we're just going for basic aesthetics.
- The last name 'Lloyd' is shared only by my ex-husband, and not any extended family with whom I have a connection, so there's no link to a group of people, emotional or otherwise.
The reasons why I might not, though? Pretty much the exact opposite, in a way:
- I love my family very much. I'm still, quite clearly, a Rogerson - even if not by legal name. There's no way I have ever felt less a part of my wonderful Fantastic Four just because I changed my last name. So does it matter?
- Taking my old name back might be seen as a fresh start, but only if I want to create and can truly identify with a new girl under that name. There's a possible element of shame, responsibility, or explanation involved too, to some degree: having to have the people in your life (personal and professional) adapt or revert to using your maiden name again, because the marriage you wanted so badly failed. It's a very obvious marker, at least at the beginning of the process. More than that, though, while I love my family name, moving to the States and learning to be, rather than to seem to be is all tied into the name I now bear. I do not regret coming here and the reasons why I did so, and nor do I regret who I have become. I actually quite like the woman - and she's pretty self-sufficient and strong just as she is.
- This I will explain in the same way as point #1. I'm not in any way less connected to other Rogersons simply because I quit the name for what was, at the time, a very positive and loving reason.
- The amount I care about both my names being short is negligible. Also, the joke nickname 'Eviloid' has been born of the new surname I adopted, which is pretty awesome as well.
- Sharing a name with just Ben isn't something I especially want going forward, but at the same time, I also don't mind too much in some ways. It's also my name. It's something I chose. He didn't give it to me, I took it. The choice to keep it or rescind it is also mine, either way.
This isn't something I have to decide until later in 2014, and I intend on giving it a lot more thought. Another option, of course, is to pick a new name all my own (although I think that NC law actually prohibits that, unfortunately, at least as part of the divorce paperwork), so I could probably have some fun with that! One thing is for sure, though: Eve Rogerson has been here all along.