comes and goes


This is kind of embarrassing but it still makes me laugh sometimes.

When I was in elementary school, I worshipped the library (still do, I guess). We would go every week and we could get two books each and it was so incredible. In the middle of the library was a podium, and a different book would be there every week. This book always had some kind of power, because I had to stand on my tippy toes to reach it, so it had an air of extra importance.

One week there was a book of name definitions. I always felt that my name was a little plain being only four letters, plus I never came across any other Lisas and I was pretty sick of it. If it had a good definition though, I was willing to forgive my mother, who, after being stuck with the name Janelle wanted her daughter to have a “normal” name.

So I looked it up. “See Elizabeth.” What’s this? My real name was Elizabeth? I was ecstatic. I flipped to Elizabeth and read, “Consecrated to God.” I had no clue what that meant or who God was, but I was guessing it was pretty important. That was when I started telling everyone I knew that my real name was Elizabeth, and it wasn’t until several years later that I realized this was not exactly the case. That sucked.

I also eventually realized that my name was merely a bastardized sound for a name that implied that I was meant to become a nun. When I was in high school my mom, finally realizing her mistake, offered to let me change my name to Elizabeth, but as I’ve since grown awfully attached to Lisa, I kept it. It kind of makes sense. I’ve also since discovered that my name means “smooth” in Spanish and almost “bee” in Greek.


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