Friday, February 26, 2010
Who Are You?
So I have a husband named Tom.
At least, I thought his name was Tom.
He’s slowly been morphing himself into Thomas.
It started awhile back when he ordered some pizza. I heard him say to the pizza guy, “My name is Thomas.”
I frowned but let it slide past.
Then when he bought his Kevlar tires he was asked for a name.
“Thomas,” he said.
“I thought you were Tom,” I whispered at him.
The Sears worker taking Tom’s name looked up with a start. He was probably wondering if I was some One Night Stand that had gone on longer than planned.
“I can be Thomas.” Tom shrugged like it was no big deal. “The name is on my birth certificate, you know.”
Well. Yes. But he had always been Tom to me. When he introduced himself in high school he said, “Hi, I’m TOM.” Not Thomas. He didn’t tell me, “Hi, I’m Tom but in about twelve years I’m going to go by Thomas. Cool?”
When he signed my Valentine’s Day card I noticed he signed it Thomas.
Then when I was on Facebook the other day I noticed that he had changed his name from Tom to Thomas.
What in the holy heck?
“Who are you?” I demanded. “Am I supposed to call you Thomas now? Because I won’t!”
“Things change,” Tom said casually. I hate how he rarely gets worked up over anything. He just calmly sat on the couch and flipped through a magazine.
“Are you having some sort of midlife crisis?” I wondered. Then I started to panic. First comes the name change, then comes wanting to buy a motorcycle, then comes wanting a fresh wife...granted, don’t midlife crisis’s start when the person is older? Thus the name MIDLIFE crisis? But then again, when you’re an Airman in the Air Force, I imagine midlife crisis’s could come much sooner.
“No midlife crisis,” Tom replied.
“Are you trying to be like a celebrity? I mean Puff Daddy changed his name a lot. He was Puff Daddy, the he wanted P. Diddy, and then he wanted Diddy, and I have no idea what he’s going by these days.” I placed my hand solemnly on his shoulder. “Are you pulling a Puff Daddy, Tom?”
Tom rolled his eyes. “I’m not pulling a Puff Daddy. I’m just going by my given name.”
“But really, am I supposed to call you Thomas now?”
Tom shrugged again. “That’s up to you.”
“You do know I like the name Thomas. It has a Tudor-esque ring to it. You know how much I love Thomas Cromwell and Thomas Moore, God rest their souls. Practically everyone was named Thomas in that time. So if you really wanted me to, I suppose I could be coerced to call you Thomas,” I said grandly.
Tom set his magazine aside. “You can call me what you want. I don’t care.”
He was frustrating me. “What if I just wanted to abruptly change my name?” I asked.
Tom started tugging on a loose piece of skin from his hand. Ew. Why must he do that in front of me? “If you wanted to change your name then fine. I don’t know why you’re making a big deal out of this.”
“I don’t know what to call my own husband anymore, that's why I'm making a big deal over this!”
“And I just told you to call me what you want.”
An evil glint came into my eye. “Fine. I’ll call you Mid Life Crisis Tom/Thomas then.”
“But I’m not having a mid life crisis.”
“Fine! Then to be on the safe side you’ll be Tom-slash-Thomas to me now. So Tom-slash-Thomas, what do you want for dinner?” I wondered sweetly.
“Don’t do that. Call me one or the other.”
(Was so tempted to call him One Or The Other, you have no idea how hard it was not to comment on that...)
“I like Tom-slash-Thomas. It has a fun ring to it," I said happily.
“Sometimes I think you need help,” Tom said, standing up. He headed into the kitchen.
“I love you, Tom-slash-Thomas!” I yelled to his back.