A few weeks ago, a pal from the days when my kids were babies reached out to me on Facebook Messenger and began the note: "Hey Patty,. . ."
It had been so long since someone called me by this nickname that I was confused for a moment and thought they had reached out to the wrong person.
But then I remembered my real name is Patricia. I cannot recall one time that either of my parents or grandparents ever called me Patricia, so sometimes it is easy to forget the name that is on birth certificate.
And with a name like Patricia, I've been called so many names. I know it might not seem like a big deal, but it is really irritating to tell someone your name and then have them call you something else entirely.
So, in order to make it easy to steal my identity, here is the list of all the names I've been called. Note, this is not an exhaustive list. I did not include the bright and colorful names like "that lady who parks wherever she wants," or "that woman who is always shouting."
Feel free to choose your favorite; but know that some of these names might end up with us not being friends anymore (You'll have to find your own Pat, Patty or Patsy elsewhere.):
1. Patricia: I suppose I was called this on the day I was born; but then by the time I was sent home all the "Welcome Baby" cards my name was something else entirely. I once had a job with another Tricia on the team and I was not allowed to be called Tricia or Trish and was exclusively Patricia. I am also called Patricia by distant cousins who respect how my name is written on Facebook and choose not to shorten it. And by people who call to tell me I've won a cruise.
2. Tricia: My parents always called me Tricia. Sometimes Tricia Anne, when I was in trouble, which was often. My oldest friends, the ones who knew me before I was the current me, they still call me Tricia. If you call me Tricia, I know you are the OG of pals.
3. Tish: My Nana always tried to get Tish to stick. I swear she used to whisper in my little baby ear that my name was Tish. She claimed later this was because Tricia would be too hard to say. I think she just liked cute nicknames. Anyway, Tish never stuck.
4. Trishy: My beloved Australian colleagues called me Trishy sometimes. They were allowed because of their fun accents and their dedicated to adding "y" sounds to the end of every word. It was a cultural allowance.
5. Patty/Patti: This is an old time favorite from my schools days. It was an absolutely DELIGHT to be a junior high girl in the peak of her awkward stage and have some English teacher call on you and use a name that was not yours, saying, "Patty, go ahead." It happened so often in every class for 3 years, that I eventually began demanding they say my correct name "IT IS TRICIA" and then there would be the call home "Patty, was very disrespectful in class today." My Dad almost always took those calls, would respond with "Okay." And then we'd repeat the strange Patty dance.
6. Pat: My AP European History* teacher in high school would offer no correction on the substance of my tests; but she would indeed correct the name I wrote on my blue book, crossing out "Tricia" and replacing it with "Pat." I literally still have no idea where Germany is. But I do know that Mrs. Ellenberger still believes my name is Pat.
7. Patsy: This pops up once in a while when someone is feeling kinda cute. It does not make me feel kinda cute.
8. T.: I sign all my letters and emails with T. The first time I might use my name; but after that I am just the lady known as T. In fact, there is a small population of people who call me T. I love these people, because they pay attention,.
9. Trish: Of course, because that's my name.
10. Mommy: Three of my favorite people call me Mommy. I think that is my favorite name. Sometimes the girls call me "Mother" and then insult me. Sometimes the boy calls me "Mama." But mostly they call me mommy. Sometimes they like to say Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, Mommy several times in a row while screaming or throwing something at me. They are still my favorite people.
Note: My granddad used to call my Nana "Mother" and it is made me believe my husband would have to call me mother. I am glad this is not a requirement!
*This is such a mean nerd phrase: "AP EUROPEAN HISTORY." I am annoying myself.