Tia, 3.5 yrs.
My husband says I still have the same smile. (I promise you I no longer have the same hairstyle.)
Tia is a nickname I had when I was younger. For some reason it was the obvious choice for me as a blogger identity when I started my blog. Since that time, it feels as though I have rekindled an old relationship from the past - and I am rather enjoying it. I had forgotten many things about her! Lately, I have been toying with the idea of using Tia as my name when I move to New Zealand. Not that I don't like my current name, because I really do. I always have. To me, it is unique and beautiful, and I have never run into another "me". However, the other fact is that it is also a bit complicated for most people. Some of my friends of ten years or more still don't know how to spell it correctly. Tia seems simple and clear and fun. No complications. What you see is what you get. Playful. Fresh.
It would not be the first time that I have changed my first name. When I lived in Sweden, I went by my middle name. It happens to be a more typical Swedish name, and therefore it was less complicated for everyone. And, fresh out of high school, I think I also wanted to reinvent myself. Am I looking to do that again? Perhaps. But maybe even more so than that, I feel like through this process I am changing. In significant ways. And maybe a new name (that is really an old name) would be a way to recognize and honor that. I don't know. I will continue to give it some more thought.
There is another interesting point about the name Tia that almost makes me feel like I am SUPPOSED to start using it in NZ. (OK, so you may think it's silly, but I thought it was kind of wild.) My job will be with the Lakes District Health Board in Rotorua, which is toward the central part of the North Island. This district also includes a city named Taupo, by Lake Taupo. That area's true full name is "Taupo nui a Tia", which translates to mean the "Great Cloak of Tia". Tia was the name of the great tohunga (meaning a priest and a "keeper of the secrets" - a healer) and a chief, who was the first person to explore the interior of the north Island. So, maybe it would be fitting that I adopt that name again. I know I could use a bit of "chief spirit" as I go forth in this adventure and my quest to be a healer! What do you think?