Like most African names, the origin of my name is rooted in the circumstances surrounding my birth. My name is not a traditional African name; it is a western (Biblical) name with African mutation.
My name was formed from the fusion of two names and often times I wonder why I was not given one or the other. However, over time I have come to embrace it and have reached the conclusion that having this name indeed makes me special and different from the multitude. I often times believe that I was made for something bigger than my counterparts like (I will like to believe) the story of my birth depicts.
Before I recount this story, please take note of this caveat: This account of my birth has been altered greatly by the author’s perception of what was.
The day I was born was the day the sun broke out from the shadows of the cloud. It was said that for days before, a tumultous rain accompanied by lightening and roaring thunder poured continously with no hope of ending. On Thursday the 9th of July, 1987 I was born; I came out of her womb like an celestial being and in my hands the ‘loop’, a sign of victory over my parent’s failed attempt at family planning. As my lungs drew in earth’s air, I let out a cry. A cry? More like a victory chant of one who knew that he had won even before the battle had begun. In that moment, it was said that, time stood still, the sun prevailed and earth rejoiced.
My parents became torn between two names and in the end they decided that I was too great a future to bear a single name. I was thus named Grace-Mary.