What’s In A Name?

1937-Wheat-Penny-Front-Back

Here a Penny, there a Penny…..

I was born with the name of Penny Nichols.  Not an easy name to live up to.  When I was in my teens and 20’s, I went by “Six Cents”.

The name Penny (NOT Penelope) was hard enough.  I heard all the usual taunts as a kid.  Henny Penny, Bad Penny.  My brothers bastardized the name Penelope and called me that, making the “o” long and the last “e” silent.  I hated it.  Then there was that stupid cartoon on when I was a kid called “Penelope PitStop”.  Kids called me that sometimes too.

Then there are those that try to be cute.  “A Penny for your thoughts!”  or “Penny’s from heaven!”

I always wanted to be called something pretty; something exotic.  I tried for a long time to get my childhood friends to call me Eva.  But it didn’t stick.

I had enough things to deal with as a kid.  I had a big chip out of one of my front teeth, which caused me to look like I had a huge gap there.  I had (have) crazy curly/frizzy hair that I could never control.  My mom was a single mother for most of my childhood.  So money was hard to come by.  I wore hand me down clothes (with 3 brothers!) or 2nd hand clothes.  They were clean, but never new.

I never got to BUY my lunch, like the cool kids did.  I took my lunch in a brown paper sack.

I found out as an adult how I got the name Penny.  I always thought it was because my fathers’ name was Nichols, I was his “little Penny”.  Apparently I was very small, only about 4 lbs. when I was born.

I got the name Penny because my 2 older brothers thought it would be great fun to have a sister named Penny Nichols.

Thanks guys….

Needless to say, I hated my name growing up.

I did meet one other Penny Nichols when I was a kid.  I was in the 3rd grade.  Her name was really Penelope and her last name was spelled differently.  BUT she was a Penny Nichols!

I occasionally look up the meaning of my name.  Most of the time I can’t find it.  What I usually find is Penelope.  But I am not a Penelope, I am a Penny!

A few of the meanings I have found are “Web over her face”.  What the… ?  Or “bobbin”.   Uh…ok.  Or “a coin”.  Duh!

The name Penelope has meanings like “weaver” and “dream weaver”.   Which makes more sense than bobbin!!

My mother wanted to name me Rose Marie.  There was a popular song at the time by the same name.  But my dear brothers would have none of it!

Now as an adult, I like my name.  It’s different.  You don’t hear it all the time.  My last name has changed, so I am no longer Nichols.  I can’t imagine being called anything other than Penny now.  I have a few friends that have shortened my name to Pen, as a nick name and that’s ok.

I have grown into my name over the years.  It’s who I am.

Now, my last name…. Wait.  That may be too much for you to handle in one sitting.  I think I will leave that for another time.

About Penny Lane Writes

I'm a Freelance Writer that writes in several genres. I've been blogging for more than 5 years and have a growing following. I am working on 2 novels that I hope to have completed in the near future.
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