Recently, a friend on Facebook posted a list of life story questions. The goal is to answer one each week, and tell your life story in a year's time. I copied and saved the list, thinking I could use them on days like today when I don't have any blog fodder and am too tired to come up with something. So, without further ado, here is my first question and answer.
What is your full name? Explain why your parents gave you that name.
My full name is Rebecca Layne Gunstream.
Rebecca comes from one of my mother's best friends, Rebecca Goodell. She had originally wanted to spell it Rebekah, like in the Bible, but she didn't. She said that the nurse talked her out of it, claiming that no one would ever spell it right. We spelled it that way up until I started first grade, then my mother figured I'd better start spelling it the way it was on my birth certificate.
My middle name comes from General Walter P. Lane, who was my great grandfather's commanding officer during the Civil War. My middle name would have been Lane, no matter whether I'd been born a boy or a girl. If I'd been a boy, it would have been spelled Lane. (My first name would have been Gregory, if I'd been a boy.)
My older brother went to college in Marshall, Texas, and one weekend when we went up to see him -- parent's weekend, or something -- my daddy took me to see his grave. He took a picture, but it got ruined in one of the hurricanes. I used to be proud of being named for him, but after doing some research, I think I'll just use him as a reminder of the kind of person not to become.
Gunstream is my last name. My father gave it to me. It is Swedish in origin, brought to the U.S in 1836 by my Great-great grandfather Peter M. Gunstream.
So, there you have it. My full name and why my parents gave it to me.