What’s in the NAME?

  James, Shahrukh, Johnny ,Ram,Emma ,Natasha,Sarah,Deepti….each one of us has a name. Sometimes, two best friends or two distant cousins share it.Some like theirs’ and some wonder why did they(parents) named them with it?Some take pride in what refers to them and some are so proud that they add it to their kids’ name too. Some believe it has an amazing meaning and some get confused when enquired ,”Does your name mean anything?” For some it is the brand they own and for some it makes the girlfriend they want. 

A name can do wonders and a name can do blunders!! 

I come from the second half of the world. I have these totally weird ideas, my mind questions every thing that’s normal and may be my biggest negative is I am too picky. So at the age of seven, when I thought I had some brains and those weird ideas started gurgling my little top floor, I decided to question my mum. The question was about ‘the six letters’ attached to me. The six letters that went on and will go on each paper related to my life. The six letters that the world uses to call me. The six letters my parents thought will give them the most beautiful memories to last. The six letters which I call my name and everybody else calls DEEPTI.

My query was my BFF had little sweet name but why was I called DEEPTI😡? Of course, I had been upset to realise this and my mum had to come up with an excuse that I could gulp. She decided on a story. She took me in her arms and started,” Your brother was the first baby of the house so we named him Deepak( the lighting lamp) and then you were born so we named you after his name Deepti ( the star light) , not to forget you are the  light of our eyes.” This was pleasant to hear. I continue to mean the same to her still.

The fact that I was named after my brother’s name lingered on. When I turned ten and after being bullied at the school for my name, I learnt my brother did not like his name too. My brother marched up to dad like he was already forty and mentioned,” I think my name is far too common and it is time that I change it.” He’s five year elder to me and he was yet the lamp of the house,so his wish was granted. Soon, the neighbours called him Gautam( Lord Buddha) . 😳. Fancy it was in those days. I was still diptea.

I decided that when I will be his age , I shall fight for my rights too. I turned fifteen and walked up to mom. She was busy cooking and plating up and I requested,” Mum I am fifteen , could we change my name to Gautami( I was not asking for much after all)?” Mum overlooked and replied,” Your name is a lucky name my dear. We shan’t change it.” There I was. I knew that very moment I was just a starlight, too little and too far unlike the lamp.

Then I decided to change my name myself as I was changing schools. Already having no hopes of change on papers, I agreed with a few mates to call myself ‘DJ’. Ooh!! That was the trendiest acronyms that ever existed then. No more calling me chai or dip tea. I was having the coolest name in the class of fifty. DJ😎.  I opened my first email with address dj7880@hotmail.com, wrote my poetry in name of DJ , signed off my paintings as DJ, received phone calls-heard DJ. Phew!! I was having a name of my choice.

 I was done with school in 2001. Now the worry was how do I enter university and continue to be called DJ. It was an authorisation problem. I somehow, hated the tag I legally had. I woke on the first day of uni, brushed my teeth,practised smiling and introducing myself to my mates. The moment I had my first encounter, I said,” Hey I am a first year student, my name is DJ.” A sigh of relief and then I knew I could call myself it and this would be forever. I named myself in my own little world. 

I realised there is a lot in the name. It is not a few letters jotted to mean incredibly impressive or amazing. Your name is your self confidence,self identity, and a mirror image. It signifies what you are and what you can be. It materialises everything that is a part and parcel of you. It symbolises you.

I continue to stay Deepti on papers, from my birth certificate to my last job offer.And I continue to stay DJ for my BFF in St. Xaviers and for my partner.

Like SRK says,” Hi I am Rahul. Naam toh suna hi hoga.( you must have heard my name)” I proudly sign off as DJ😎,the story of my name!!


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