What’s in a Name?

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I have never liked my given first name: Irene. Sorry, I know my parents meant well, but I’m not enamored by the name. Every search I’ve done for the name – Greek, Arabic, Irish, Biblical – all indicate that the name means PEACE. And human characteristics for the name are: intense, compassionate, generous, artsy, and creative. Okay, you nailed it Mom and Dad because I am all of those.

I wish I was less intense, but since that trait has been a part of me for sixty-nine years, I think I’m stuck with it.

I don’t mind all the other traits but intensity? Ugh. I’m not even going to provide the definition for it because we all know even the way that word sounds describes what it means.

And guess what’s really intriguing? My middle name, Frances, means FREE ONE. I love that meaning but I wouldn’t want to exchange my first with my middle name because I don’t think that’s a better option for me.

But if I’ve learned anything the past several years about the word acceptance, is that it doesn’t mean you agree with something but you certainly need to let what is, be; as in Let it Be.

So I will…let it be. I admire those who have changed their names, and for far better reasons than simply not liking their given name. I figure my parents felt it in their souls to officially name me Irene Frances so out of respect for their decision, that is what my moniker will continue to be. Now I just have to come to terms with it – be at peace with it – and carry on as I have for almost seven decades.

Peace, y’all.



5 thoughts on “What’s in a Name?

    From the Pen of .... said:
    July 4, 2022 at 8:11 am

    Irene Francis is a pretty name. A name most know and accept. My name on the birth certificate is unpronounceable, so I have used a definitive of the name to Nina

    Liked by 1 person

    Jill Weatherholt said:
    June 27, 2022 at 1:26 pm

    I happen to think your full name is beautiful, Irene Frances! It fits you perfectly. xo

    Liked by 1 person

      Kim West Righetti said:
      June 29, 2022 at 2:24 pm

      Hi Irene, I don’t know if you remember me. I am Kim West your old neighbor in West Covina. My Mom Joan died in 2010 of dementia and I am glad to hear from people who have gone thru something like me.

      Liked by 1 person

        Irene Olson responded:
        June 29, 2022 at 2:37 pm

        Of course I remember you! You, my sister Mary, and I had great times together! I am sorry you too have experienced the devastating effects of dementia. My novel, REQUIEM FOR THE STATUS QUO, contains personal stories that related to my father, as well as my brother Don’s wife, who died from Alzheimer’s 5 years after my father.


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