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 Wilson Writes

I am a freelance writer that writes in several genres. I've had a successful blog with a growing and loyal following for more than 5 years. I've written articles for Counseling Directory .org, Introvert Dear .com and WOW Women on Writing. I'm currently working on my first novel. You can find more of my writings on my blog at: https://pennywilsonwrites.com/ and follow me on Twitter @pennywilson123.
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