name change


I am officially Mrs. CNV. I kept my maiden name as my middle name, dropped my two existing middle names (which made my former initials CMAN), and took Andrés’ last name.

I struggled with the decision a little, but in the end I decided that if I had an established career under my maiden name, I would have just kept my name. But I am excited to have his name, and I’m excited to have the same name our children will have. And, in the end, if I had kept my maiden name, I wouldn’t be keeping “my” name … I’d be keeping my father’s name.

Keeping my existing first middle name, Marie, would have made my initials CMV, which is problematic for me because those initials stand for the Cytomegalovirus. Random that I know that, right? Here’s the thing… I don’t have CMV. It affects between 50-80% of adults, and 90.8% of people aged 80+ have it. It’s not noticeable for most healthy people that contract it after they’re born, but it can be dangerous if contracted while pregnant. I give blood as often as I’m allowed, and they once called back to inform me that I’m CMV-negative, and therefore my blood is extra pure.

So that’s how I ended up Mrs. CNV, à la Hillary Rodham Clinton and Kay Bailey Hutchison. And John Wayne Gacy. As Slate said, “In a way, it is an ingenious political solution: By shunting their old names into a prominent middle-name status, aspiring first ladies can signal to red states that they defer to their husbands while winking at the blue states that they still have their own names.”


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