I finally completed my name change yesterday and began notifying various organizations. I sent out letters and visited the credit union. It was fairly impressive that the credit union woman with the short-sleeved shirt had a scanner at her desk so she could scan my court document. The actual legal proceeding took about ten minutes. The judge asked me a few questions. I have a state certificate that includes an initial for my former first name so now I can notify them that they can eliminate it. One place that I used for notifications was Facebook. It seems that some people have known me through a few name changes. Depending on when we met, I called myself several different things.
Now the question is, what am I going to do? My last big change was a few years ago when I became a certified peer specialist. That led shortly afterward to finding a new job and getting a companion. A woman I had seen around met me in the hallway outside my office and I awkwardly decided to ask her out. A few months ago I was able to convince our agency to recruit a second peer specialist as a sign that we were growing too fast for me to be able to work effectively with our consumers. Now I work full time in one program and he works in the other. However some of my old consumers still call me from time to time.
Outside of work and romance, things are changing, too. I recently joined an atheist group South East Wisconsin Free Thinkers. That led shortly to creation of Black Free Thinkers of Milwaukee. I became Facebook friends with some of the members and things began changing in their lives, too. One young man too a friend’s advice and was able to get a new job. One of the co-founders of the group is working on his music. And another member wants to sing.
We keep opening these doors to new possibilities in our lives. To quote a song, “everything must change. The young become the old and mysteries do unfold.” There are people with broken cars trying to figure things out. There are people who don’t like their bodies and people who enjoy their bodies very much. There are those in hardship and others newly in love. That is the way life goes for all of us, believers and non-believers. So I suggest we take this time today and ask, what’s next?