Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Who am I?

Growing up, everyone called me Peter. I don't think anyone even called me Pete until college. And then, by accident, I got the nickname Petey. I liked it and it's how I've introduced myself for years. But I've been thinking about returning to my roots.

I've talked with several people about this. Some people have strong opinions. My mother, for example, strongly favors Peter while several others can only think of me as Petey. Those who don't have strong opinions wanted to know more. Almost all of them asked me one question:

Which name best represents me?

I don't know the answer to that question. I thought of my friend Launa Marie Lewis (currently serving a mission in Portland). She has two names, both of them given to her by her parents. To her, one of them represents her spunky, fun side. The other represents a more grounded self. Both of these names fit her; they just fit different aspects of her.

I think the same is true of me. Part of me is stable and reliable, like a stone (which is the meaning of Peter). I don't budge from my principles. And, like my namesake, my stability includes wholehearted loyalty. On the other hand, I am also Petey. I smile a lot. I'm young at heart. I don't know that either of these parts of me is truer than the other. I don't think that either is. I have no plans to abandon either aspect of myself.

I'm going to use both names. I'm making this up as I go along, so I don't know exactly how or when I'll use either. What I do know is that using both feels right to me.