i officially changed my name last week. tears welled up in my eyes as i handed over the form, our marriage license, and my passport. as i sat down to wait for my paperwork to be processed, i cried quietly in my chair. this is not surprising for me because all endings make me cry: co-workers leaving, moving to a new apartment, the end of a weekend at home. a friend/co-worker knew where i was and walked by the social security office at the just the right time. she came in and told me that yes, this is a big deal and it’s ok to be sad. she gave me a hug and i sobbed into her arms and something about that moment felt so good. i was honoring my feelings. honoring the name i carried all my life and the memories and people associated with it. and then i stopped. because even though i changed my name, a name that is a big part of my identity and one that i cherish deeply, i was ok. i had made the right decision.