By any other name would smell as sweet."
In the lead up to our wedding, I have found myself connecting with this beautiful quote because my wonderful wife and I took the decision to combine our surnames when we got married.
So I guess you can just call us the Perringwoods from now on folks!
The idea came about because we felt we are in an equal relationship. We also saw it as a representation of letting go of the past - which have seen recent sadder times - and moving on, wiping the slate clean by starting afresh. We had seen such sorrow as Will Wood and Amy Perring and hoped by ridding ourselves of our separate names we could now step into the future together a new.
For me personally, I loved the idea. But I must admit, I had never even heard or thought about it before - I don't think I'm alone here am I chaps?
It has always been annoying for me as a sports journalist when I was on the phone to someone for me to say "Will Wood" to somebody because there was too much alliteration there - with the two "W's" and people would always ask me to then repeat myself.
So the Perring bit just breaks it up perfectly.
As usual I have researched the concept and it turns out it is quite a popular idea these days with even two blokes on my Facebook page doing something similar so Amy has clearly always been a trend setter!
I think the idea came from Amy originally but as soon as I heard about it, I loved it and thought it was brilliant.
It is the perfect marriage of both of of our heritages, and as we are both such big family people we thought what better way to honour that then to combine our surnames?
After all, one of the things people have said about our wonderful wedding was every time they looked around the room, they saw both of our families mixing together perfectly - which gave us huge delight - so I guess this is another representation of that.
I can take absolutely no credit for it as it was all Amy's idea - as all of the best ideas are - and I loved it.
Then to top it all off, it gave me such pride and pleasure to see it as my byline in the paper this last week so everyone could see I am proud to be a Perringwood.
Amy and I talked about whether to hyphenate our surnames or not, but I suggested there often tends to be a stigma attached to hyphenated surnames (unfortunately), and seeing as we plan to have a family some day, we didn't want our future offspring to go through any of that in the class register. Blended our surnames together was the perfect compromise.
I must admit I was a touch worried at first about it because of people's reaction to it - being a self-conscious person, naturally heightened by my brain injury - but it has been nothing but positive so far. I was worried about what other men would think of me. Whether I would be thought badly of, not taken seriously. But Amy made made me realise that I was concerning myself over other peoples opinions and I was neglecting my OWN! I think its amazing. I am proud! I wear my new name with honour and pride!