As we know, I go by a few names. Red, Jess, Jessie, Jessica, homegirl, curvy girl, etc. I find that people at different stages of my life call me different names. For example, I ran into Karen yesterday in Macey's parking lot. She is a sweet girl I went to middle school with in Florida. As I walked by she yelled, "Jessie!" And before recognizing her, I knew in my mind it had to be one of only a few specific people in my life who call or called me Jessie. It was Karen, and it was so nice to see her.
I love having these nicknames. It is endearing to be called different things. It is also helpful considering the hundreds of Jessica's I have had to share classes with. The red hair always leaves an impression on teachers but Jessica remains common and forgetful. When teachers have a hard time remembering, I give them all the options as stated above. This semester, I have one teacher in particular who is struggling with this. She always wants to call me Rose. So I said Rose is close to roso which is Italian for Red, so you could call me Red. She is a really sophisticated humanities teacher, so she feels very uncomfortable calling me Red. So, I tried thinking of another option. I told her friends call me Jess, people called me Jessie when I was younger, I go by homegirl in my voicemail . . . I tried everything. Finally I whipped out the purple princess story and told her that I would only answer to Jessica Anna Purple Princess Lady when I was younger. I did this to leave an impression on her, but then she said that would only help if I wore purple every day for the rest of the semester. Finally, she looked down at her class role and saw that my middle name was Anna, so she said Jessica Anna. There we go. I'll just call you Jessica Anna. I thought that was fine.
The next day in class she called on me, or at least I thought it was me: Jessica Ann. I looked around to see if anyone else would answer then realized it was me. Alright, well she did what she could. This is yet another case of my identity being tailored to meet people's needs, wants and desires. I'm totally OK with this, especially since it reminds me of Carol Ann, one of the best and most devoted friends I have ever had.
So who am I? I am whoever you need me to be.
Jessica Anna Myers