We’re excited to share the Real Name Change Story of newlywed, Jeny D. Read how this English teacher met the love of her life on stage in Baltimore, honored her late father with an ice cream bar at her wedding, and what made her decide to change her name as an ardent feminist!
Will and I met on the stage of a local theater, about 7 years ago. And although the stage was rife with mosquitoes and the sticky humidity of a Baltimore summer, I was instantly head over heels for Will. Will, on the other hand, barely noticed me*. The next summer, we again shared a stage, this time cast opposite each other.However, the following summer was different. The mosquitoes and humidity didn’t change, but I played opposite Will and we developed crushes on each other, which turned into friendship. Over the course of the summer we talked, flirted, and eventually had our first kiss. However, when the summer was over, he went back to college, and I back to work. The summer ended, but our friendship continued. A few years later, we reconnected when I interned just down the street from his apartment. They decided to get together for a drink. A drink turned into a date. A date turned into a relationship. And a relationship into a marriage.
*Will would like to say that is categorically untrue; that he most certainly did notice Jeny, he was just playing it cool for the first time in his life. A little too cool, it would seem.
Our wedding day was perfect. We’re both art/literature people, and our ceremony included 3 poems and a short message about the beauty of marriage. Will and I had our first dance to a jazz rendition of the Harry Potter theme. We stayed away from top 40 hits and chose our favorite 80s, 90s, and Elvis songs that kept everyone on the dance floor all night. My dad passed away about a year before the wedding. Will and I wanted to include something that would honor and acknowledge him, and celebrate his life and influence on us without it seeming trite or morose. So we decided to have the “Dan Timmel Memorial Ice Cream Bar”, a true celebration for the slender man who ate ice cream every day. Will wore a kilt, in honor of his Scottish heritage, and we decorated with an art deco motif, because, as my dad told us, “the theme of any wedding should be marriage.”
As an ardent feminist, I knew I would need a really cool last name to make me want to change my name! There are a few other factors: First of all, I am adopted, I am Italian, but “Timmel” is German, so while I am most certainly a Timmel, I’m not a Timmel, if that makes sense. My dad passed away a year ago, so to honor him, and the incredible impact he had on helping me become the strong, funny, independent woman I am today, I am changing my middle name to Timmel. Will, as in many things, was eternally supportive and said he would be happy whatever I chose, but he did encourage me to take Timmel as my middle name.
Honestly, the most exciting part of changing my name is getting called “Jeny Dalrymple”, especially when Will is around. We share a smile and it feels like we’re little kids in our own exclusive club.
The hardest part of changing my name was all the forms and the order in which they need to be filed. I’m a high school English teacher. I like to think I’m pretty smart and can figure things out on my own, but this was just too much for me to keep organized. It’s the kind of thing that I would have called my dad about and gotten his help, so I figured I had to either spend a couple Saturdays just pushing through or get some outside help.
I might not have ever changed my name without help from MissNowMrs. Not only supplying each of the necessary documents, but including information on what individual questions were asking, how to find information required, and a huge database. I can confidently say MissNowMrs saved me well over 15 hours of work. You’ve made it accessible, easy, and very user friendly.
IT’S WORTH IT! The stress of a wedding combined with the excitement, and stress of truly beginning a life together (whether you’ve lived with your partner before or not) can feel overwhelming. There are so many steps to take to change your name with everyone.
My mom always told me with any major event (live moving) “Expect 3 things to go wrong. When the first one happens, you say, ‘There’s #1!’, and usually by the time you get to 3 problems, the move is over.” Don’t let glitches get to you. Remember, this is forever; the big picture is that you’re with the love of your life, for better or worse, don’t let little things become the “worse.”