Lori or Bhadra
If you are confused about my name these days, you are in good company. Lots of people politely ask, "WTF is going on here?" Others are terrified of mispronouncing the new name so they just stopped using my name all together. Let me clear the air on the whole name thing...
A few years ago I decided I wanted a name change. There were a number of reasons I went down this path but first and foremost, I wanted to honor the true essence of this being. I chose Bhadra (pronounced baah-draah) because it translates from the ancient Sanskrit language as "gentle one." It can also mean prosperous, lucky or fortuitous. And Lakshmi is of course the Hindu goddess of wealth, love, and prosperity. For me, these meanings are vibrationally in alignment with who I am and who I am becoming.
Secondly, I wanted to choose my name. I can be fiercely independent at times and I love the idea of being in control of something so often seen as ‘out of our hands’. I like knowing that I’ve done something many people would assume is not even an option or not even on some people's radar. Choosing a name is not an easy thing to do. It took me over 5 years to get up the courage and then another few months to actually decide on the name I wanted. Ultimately, I chose mine through a process of "divination" and deep listening.
Lastly, I am passionate about my family but my definition of family goes beyond those who share a name. To me, family is whoever we choose it to be, without titles or roles. We get to choose the people we love and hang out with, mostly. These are the people who I call family and they don't really care what my name is or if we share a bloodline.
When I first decided to change my name, I wanted to immediately go through the legal channels of making this name official but some other personal matters kept me from taking this action back then. As time has gone by, there have been a wide range of reactions to the whole name change thing. Some folks just refuse to acknowledge the new name. It's like I came out and they think it is a phase I will get over. Other people, like my corporate business clients, thought I had closed my business to run off with the Hare Krishnas when I changed my name on Facebook. It took me awhile to realize they were not tracking as my income was declining. So, for my bottom line, I still keep my given name.
I have come to realize my name does not make me who I am and people will always gravitate to the name they are comfortable with. It takes conscious effort to change old habits. I have many different circles of friends and family so I am now used to Bhadra in some places and Lori in others.
AND....my preference is Bhadra. Maybe some day I'll get a Bhadra pin made.