Wednesday, December 23, 2009

What's In A Name?

"A rose by any other name would smell as sweet." From Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, 1594.

Growing up, I had a: Gramma, Grampa, Granny, Uncle Jim and Aunt Lynne, Uncle Tony and Aunt Esther, Uncle Geoff, Uncle Mac, Cox, Caler, Nanny, and Papaw. This is what my family called each of these people around my siblings and I all of my life. I guess I should explain really quick who the last four are. Cox was my Granny's mom. She was my namesake, Rose Amanda Cox, and to everyone else, she was Grandmother Cox, but when my oldest cousin started to talk, she became just Cox. Caler, was my Gramma's dad. His name was Vance Caler and I don't know why we called him by his last name, but that's just what we did. Nanny is my Grampa's sister and Papaw was her husband and Linus's middle namesake. Oh, and I should mention that Gramma isn't Gramma anymore. Now that she is a GreatGramma, she prefers to be called GG.

In my family, it's a little different. My mom is Nana and my dad is Papa. I am either Meemanda or just Manda, TJ is either Uncle Day or just Day, Tyne is Sissa, and Bethany is Sissy. I just think it's weird that not one of us has a "traditional" name for ourselves. I am pretty sure that my mom is the only one that picked out her name though. I remember when Tyne got pregnant with Tytan, my mom said that she was too young to be "grandma" and so she wanted to be called "Nana". I am not sure how my dad became Papa, but that is him. He just doesn't seem like a Grandpa to me. As for my siblings, well, they all have their little stories as to how they came about.

I am "Meemanda". That is from my first nephew. If you think about it, Nana and Manda sound a lot alike coming from a child just learning how to talk. I guess he got pretty sick of it when he'd say one or the other and both of us would turn and say, "What?". So, he would say "Nana" for my mom and a very pronounced "Meeeemanda" for me. I thought it was dang cute. As he got older, it shortened to Mamanda and occasionally the original Meemanda. Sometimes the other kids will say it, but usually just Tytan and my mom. I like it. But I have never, ever been Aunt Amanda. It sounds weird. I have been called Auntie Amanda and that's pretty cute, but that's another story.

Tyne, or as she prefers, Melissa, is Sissa to everyone in the family now. Mikayla couldn't say Melissa, so she shortened it to Sissa. I think it's stinking cute and we all stick to it. She is more of a Sissa to me than a Melissa, but has always been a Tyne to me. I couldn't pronounce Melissa growing up either, so we called her Tyne.

TJ is Uncle Day or just plain Day. I am not sure who started this, but it's pretty cute. Kids come up with the funniest things to say when they can't pronounce words properly and it's funny what sticks. Bethany called TJ, Geegee with a hard G. I am surprised that it didn't stick, but I guess Tyne and I were able to pronounce TJ, so Bethany finally came around to the proper pronunciation. I like Geegee better, but Day is good too.

Bethany, oh my little sister Bethany has more names and nicknames than anyone I know. For the longest time she thought her name was Bethany Sissy Cookie Mignonne Edwards. Her actual given name is Bethany Mignonne Edwards, but my Gramma always called her Cookie and our other two siblings called her Sissy... I think that's how that all came about. My personal favorite is Ernie. My dad used to call her Bethernie and every Christmas would give her a bag of Ernies. They are the grocery store bulk equivalent of M&M's. It went from Bethernie to just Ernie and I like it the very best, but since she was Sissy to the rest of the siblings, she became Sissy to all of her nephews and will be to her niece, unless I can convince Bea to call her Ernie...bwahahaha. Bethany is going to kill me if that happens.

So, does that mean that we aren't typical? Well, knowing us, that's a silly question. No, we are not typical. We never have been and never will be... but a rose by any other name would smell as sweet... I hope that means that we are just as sweet as well. We may not go by the typical moniker but that doesn't make us any different in the eyes of each other and our family.

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