This introduction usually earns me a few laughs from the room. People all my life have found it unique that I have a character in my name. Usually people have a full set of letters, while I have a dash in my name. Women usually have a dash on their names when they get married, but I have had the dash every since my parents thought of it. A lot of people have not believed me, but I have my birth certificate to prove that.
You see that? I legally have a dash on my name. My parents were so romantic when they thought of my name. Since I was their first child, they combined their names into mine. My dad's nickname is Leo, my mom's nickname was Ana. So you see the connection? I was their labour of love as some may say, and they've shown their love through me. But the struggles of having a dash started when I began socializing.
So you can imagine what it was like for me growing up. Everyone mispronounced my name, calling me "Leeyan", "Leh-an", and some who were afraid to mispronounce just called me "Le" or used the literal pronounciation of my name, "lean". Although I've used this to my advantage, calling myself "The girl you can lean on" during campaigns and friend intros, it's still quite annoying when people mispronounce it that it came to the point that I didn't care. But for the information of everyone, my name is pronounced as Le(short e)an. A dash is meant to be a pause, not something that allows you to connect the last vowel to the other.
People mispronounce names all the time. But they also misspell my name. I have come across so many wrong spellings of my name, like the following:
Quite annoying right? But my struggles don't stop there.
So now that I'm almost eighteen, I have to take care of my documents to make sure that I won't have any problems in the future. But sadly, a lot of computers don't accept having a character in my name. Here's an example:
Although some of my cards and documents now have a dash, it was still a problem then when I had three first names instead of only two.
But whatever may be the case, I still love my name though. I mean who else could say that they have a dash in their name? So far I'm the only one (insert evil laugh here). My name is as unique as I could be, and I'd never change a thing. :D