Why I changed my name

Some people assume when they discover I changed my name to Gemma( soft g sounds like Emma ), that it had something to do with gemstones… I actually cringe at that thought- ha! It never occurred to me to make that connection.

I simply loved the name when I first heard it years ago and never thought in this  lifetime  that I would have the courage to call it my own.  

Let me start from the beginning . My parents named me Veronica at birth which I think is a beautiful name- for someone else:) Throughout  my childhood my friends called me V which I liked a lot more, but let's face it - V is not a name:)  

And with people I would first meet I can not tell you how often they would remember me as Victoria or Vanessa - so much so that I began to answer to both of these names without flinching.  

So I searched for a new name . On a spiritual retreat in Bali a few years ago someone suggested Sophia. Again a beautiful name and yet not me. 

I decided to drop it and find a way to accept my name until one fateful day at the supermarket - the friendly checkout girl said to me: I'm sorry I keep forgetting your name - you just don't seem like a Veronica! And just like that my mission to find my name caught on fire once again- this time blazing.  

I came back to the store with a couple different names and each time she would shake her head no until I said "Gemma" Yes! That's it- your a Gemma ! 

I know what you're thinking: that it's perhaps strange I would trust a friendly stranger with validating my name- one of the most personal things about me... And yet it was sharing the name with my closest friends that really sealed the deal- people who have known me for over twenty years were like of course you are a Gemma !

Back to how my brain works. This is the part of my name story that I find most interesting for it's glaringly obvious detail: A wise meditation teacher asked me the meaning of Gemma and I told him I didn't know. I then googled it and discovered it is Italian ( hello I'm half Italian!) and means precious stone.

So there you have it:)