The day that I received my decree absolute in the post I had a tide of emotions, sadness, anger, relief and hope. But something else struck me, I had been officially divorced for 10 days and I hadn’t know! I was so uninvolved in the process (the opposite of the day I got married). My solicitor had done all the paperwork, I hadn’t had to go to court, all I had to do was sign my name a few times! It then got me thinking about my name. The decision to change my name in the first place had been a simple one. I had never even considered keeping my maiden name once we were married and like most brides I was excited about being called Mrs for the first time and signing my new name!
But holding my decree absolute I started to wonder if I should change my name back. Was I a Hallam anymore? Could I be a Wood again? It began to feel like a bigger question that just a name. Who was I? So much of who I had been, was being someone’s wife and that was now gone. I felt like my identity had been dissolved along with my marriage. And as with the divorce its self, it had happened without me even realising it!
My first thought was that Hallam is the girls’ surname, and I did like the fact we all shared the name. There is also a very long list of people I would have inform if I changed it back, and the admin involved in that did not fill me with any joy! But on the other hand, it still felt like my ex’s name, not mine.
Being married and having the girls changed me in a thousand ways, big and small and I’m just not Emma Wood anymore (she had nicer boobs and a flatter stomach for a start!) I realised I can’t go back to who I was, I need to look to the future and decide who I want to be now
So for better or worse I am still Emma Hallam. And as for the question as to ‘who am I’ well the answer to that is I’m a mum, a daughter, a sister, an aunty and a friend. I’ve realised I’m strong, independent and at times overly emotional. I’m still a massive Friends fan, I love cake and I get grumpy when I’m hungry; the rest I guess I can figure out in my own time along the way