Something’s Missing…

My full name is Cassie Mullins Moses. Mullins is my maiden name and I have chosen to include it in my “real” name because I don’t have a middle name. I also just like keeping a part of myself that is BS (Before Stephen, ha, got ya on that one!) The first question I get about this apparent mistake is “Why??” Why on earth didn’t your parents take the time to give me a middle name? It’s especially vexing because BOTH of my siblings have the ability to complete a proper monogram on their backpacks/towels/anything on this earth that requires initials.

Here is the story my parents have told me: They didn’t know until I arrived that I was a girl and they had not agreed on a girls name at all. Finally, they compromised and named me Cassie after a character in the book The Dollmaker. The character’s full name was Cassie Marie but she dies in a train accident and it was just too morbid to call me Cassie Marie. Apparently it was not too morbid to call me Cassie (just a hint of sarcasm in case you didn’t catch on.) So they put nothing in the column of my birth certificate that reads “Middle Name” and I was destined to a life of making up my own.

Friends, there were some doozies. My personal favorite was the Cassandra phase. If I was going to be a one name girl, by gosh, it would be a fancy name. “Yes, Cassie is just short for Cassandra. I don’t always like to write it out.” This is in fact lying but I saw it as storytelling; two totally different things. Later things got a bit more out of hand and I was Cassandra Mercedes. This flamboyant name had such a soap opera feel coming off my tongue. Now I cringe thinking about my fake name as it has a more of a witness protection feel.

Later on, around 10-12 years of age, I wanted to be Cassie Dorothea. My maternal grandmother’s name was Dorothy and I really felt like my name needed some family history behind it. But Dorothy wasn’t fancy enough so I tweaked it a bit. I hounded my mom. I knew you could go to the court house and pay to have your name changed. I begged. Mom kept putting me off for various reasons. I now understand the main reason was because I was nuts and would want to keep on changing my name. Well played mom.

At some point I stopped caring that I was without a middle name. One person at my college was sure it was simply so horrible I refused to share it with anyone. I never could convince him that my LL Bean backpack said CM because I was just Cassie Mullins.

My girls have lovely middle names (Isabel, Emerson, and Harper) and I must admit, I gave each one a great deal of thought. They are not named after anyone but I hope they will appreciate the names their dad and I gave them. I really think that my mom and dad couldn’t come up with a middle name because I wasn’t supposed to have one. I would always need and want Mullins to remain a part of my identity; in my heart and on paper.


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