What’s in a name

In some cultures, you get a new name after big life milestone events. It makes sense. In the Western culture I am in, it is not quite that easy. Modern life has a lot of paperwork going even without legal name changes. Immigrants are justifiably weary of messing with existing paper trails that offer at least some protection.

When I started my business, I named it Christine Locher Ltd., I started the Ltd. company just to be able to complete a project on a freelance basis. I knew there was writing in the offing, and I wanted the coaching to play a bigger part. Name it after yourself, I thought, that is least likely to change as I was figuring out what that wanted to be, how I wanted to contribute.

Well. You all get a good round of laughs now. Laughing with me, as the saying goes, hopefully, not laughing at me. I am Lior now. Lior Locher (not Christine). The paperwork is under way, and will likely take time (likely: years) between Covid and Brexit and many places closed.

Lior means “my light”, and we all need more of that (I started writing this on the shortest day of the year in Northern Europe). It is a Hebrew name, it is also gender-neutral, which is not a coincidence.

I wanted to affirm some of the changes in my life, and I wanted that to be real, not just when I get called to the Bimah, or because I think Lior sounds better. All in all, it feels more truthful. I feel more like me as Lior than I ever felt as Christine (and I still get it wrong in emails and the signature is still wonky, after being a Christine for 42 years).

Rituals matter. Coming out as yourself matters. Putting a stake in the ground matters. While I am normally the one supporting others in big change journeys, it’s nice to be on the other side sometimes, doing my own work, taking all the steps to make this take hold in my day-to-day, and putting my own flags in where I think they belong. Feeling how big change feels, at the full amplitude and occasional gnarliness of it all. Seeing if my practice holds, if the stuff actually work that I use with others. Doesn’t mean it ain’t gnarly, but it holds alright.

Put your own oxygen mask etc etc. You need a place to stand on to be able to support others. I have done major structural work on that platform. And now Lior is here, back. Ready. It’s still me, only a bit more so.

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