Friday, October 16, 2009
Liane… nothing too impressive really. What’s in my name? Irony, that’s what’s in my name. Most people have a family history to their names, as they are named after their grandparents or other family members. Not so in my case. I can go back in my family line and there is no such name as mine. Some people receive their name out of a book, because it sounded nice, fits well with a last name or it just caught their attention. Not so in my case. Some receive their name as it is a fashionable name at the time, perhaps just has a neat sound to it. Not so in my case. My mother wanted to name me “Nancy Angelique”. Nancy used to be a name her friends called her during her teenage years. Her real name is Eveline and I can understand why she didn’t want to be called that when she was younger, as it is a rather old name. Angelique... well, here is the ‘cool sound thing’. Didn’t happen that way… instead, I am Liane.
When my mother learned of the accidental pregnancy which resulted of a party night and both being drunk.. yeah.. I have a lot to my ego!, she was only 16 years young; he was only 17 years of age. They didn’t get married and it ended up that my “father”, I am using that term very loosely, became more scarce as the months went by. However, when I was born, he was right there and the moment of assigning a name was present. He pressed for the name Liane and fought very hard for it. Liane is a type of vine… the type of vine Tarzan uses as his transportation device through the jungle. But no… my father wasn’t a fan of Tarzan, but rather of a different movie entirely. The movie was called: Liane, das Maedchen aus dem Urwald (Liane, the girl from the jungle). He fell in love with the main character. She had long, blond hair. She possessed a very beautiful body and had a very pretty face. Her personality was a very sweet one, which made him fall in love with the name. That’s what he wished for me. To have all those visual qualities and be as sweet as can be. Oh the irony!
My mother gave in; let go of the ole Nancy Angelique and instead claimed my name as Liane. Two years later, he was completely removed from my life and two years after that, a court order officially banned him from my surroundings. I carried a name that meant so much to someone, just not to me. I carried a name that was supposed to mean something, just not to me. I carried a name that was supposed to represent beauty, but nobody was there for verification. Liane was just a girl, like every other girl and he was not around to change that. He was not there to look into Liane’s face, seeing if she actually turned out the way he had hoped when giving the name.
We met for the first time when I turned 18; two days after my birthday, actually. We didn’t meet as father and daughter who want to get to know each other, but we met to attend a court appointment where I would let go of all claims against him and he no longer will have to go to jail for not paying child support. His last day in jail; my 18th birthday. I did what I was set out to do and signed all papers that removed him even further from me and my name. He was asking for some time with me, which I granted him, due to my silly ole curiosity. I heard all the stories of how much he loved my mom and the 800 page version of how I got my name. For a short moment, he seemed like a proud father, who is still pleased with his name selection for me. He told me the story several times, and each time, he was a little more drunk. He told me that he never forgot about me and that he always would have a drink in jail in my honor on my birthdays. Charming! I saw him all of four times before Jenny was born. I have asked him, to come to my apartment to get to meet his grandchild. I was stood up three times with what seemed a lame excuse on his part, while his slurring of words only added to my disappointment. I told him, that I understand now why my mom didn’t believe in him and left him. I told him, that I don’t want to see him any longer and there is no need for him to call again. Two years later, I left for America.
In 2001, my name-giver passed away. My name is still around… but what does my name mean now? To me, it spells out : irony. Irony that he fought for something that meant nothing. But in the end, my name will always remind me of the story of a man who was passionate about a name for a little girl he would never know.
What’s in your name?
Posted by Liane at 3:32 PM