When I was a child I wanted another first name, any name but “Sibyl.” My family called me Dana from the beginning. However, each year when school began my full name was visible for all to see and I wanted to hide from my “old fashioned, old lady’s name.” I was named Sibyl after my maternal grandmother. I adored her, but not her name. Until recently…
A couple of years ago when it was time to create the cover for Ink and Honey I needed to choose how my name would appear: Dana Reynolds or Sibyl Dana Reynolds. Suddenly, Sibyl, called for my attention.
I remembered my grandmother, her gentle spirit, her ability to navigate life’s challenges with dignity and grace, and her unconditional love for others. I also thought of my parents. I imagined them as they once were, young, hopeful, and just beginning their journey together. My mother and father chose my name and it held meaning for them. Suddenly, my birth name, Sibyl, revealed an illuminated purpose and newly discovered depth of meaning that had been with me all along.
In recent months as I transitioned from two websites to one, I had to choose the name for the new site. I filled several journal pages with possibilities until I became clear it was time to fully claim my name. I realized all that is necessary is the simplicity of my name.
As I grow closer to my seventies, the age my grandmother was when she died, I am seeing life’s gifts through a sepia tinted lens for the golden blessings they contain. Perhaps, I had to grow into my “wisdom” years before I could recognize the true value of my name. All I can say is that a shift occurred and I clearly realized that for the remainder of my life Sibyl is my name.
At the heart of my name is my ancestry. I put on my grandmother’s name, like a vintage dress, and at long last it fits the woman I’ve become. I am Sibyl, and a new chapter of my life’s story has begun.
Does your name have a story? Have you ever felt you’d like to change your name? What name speaks your truth?