Originally posted on Medium.
You might have noticed something different...
I went to the courthouse, sat in front of a judge and changed my last name.
Everyone's first question is "Why?" - understandably.
My answer is "I wanted to."
I start explaining in the vlog above that "there aren't many things we get to choose in life, and if you are unhappy with something and you can choose to change it with out hurting anyone, why wouldn't you choose to change it?" I want to expand on that point a bit more. What I'm getting at is you don't get to choose your gender, your sexual orientation, your eye color, or hair color from birth.
A name is something that, at least legally, is a bit more difficult to change than your hair color but if it will make you happy to change it, why wouldn't you?
I think so many people choose to not change their name, especially a last name, due to the concerns about it hurting their family or their family's legacy. This I understand, and if that is important to you then dont change your name. To be clear, I never wanted this name change to hurt my family in any way. The Cummings name has a long and interesting linage and for my family members I like the way it sounds and connects to their identity. I just never felt connected to that name when I said it next to my first name. I didn't fell confident saying it out loud. I didn't like people introducing me in meetings. I didn't like the way my first name and my last name sounded together. Its just me!
My own "name dysmorphia?"
For me the picture is far bigger than a family linage or legacy. I subscribe to the idea that we all started as stardust and we will all end up as stardust. So when you have that image in your mind you realize - who really gives a shit what my name is?
So, I changed it, because I wanted to.