It’s funny I never realized when I made my social media account using my name, Leigh Taylor, that people would assume my first name is Leigh and my last name is Taylor. I guess it’s just so normal and natural to me that these are actually my first and middle names. And in everyday life, other than a few family members who call me by my first and middle name together, as if it were a double first name, because you know, that’s a thing here in the South (shout out to all the Betty Lou’s and Mary Ann’s..) I actually go by, Taylor to friends. 🙂 My last name is in fact, Richardson (for now..cough, cough, Stefan).
I always find it humorous the way I received my first and middle name. For generations, on my dad’s side of the family, women shared two names — ”Boyce Leigh” and “Edith Taylor.” That’s right. Boyce and Edith. Now of course, although I say those names aloud with a sarcastic tone and a face that reads “what were they thinking?!” In all actuality, I love these two names due to some of my favorite women on the planet having them. Every woman on my dad’s side of the family has one of these two names, as it became a family tradition to pass down the name of which you didn’t have to the next female in the family. For example, my grandmother is Boyce Leigh, her only daughter (my aunt) is Edith Taylor. My aunt’s daughter (my first cousin) is Boyce Leigh. You get the idea, right? Well guess who was the next girl born into the family after my first cousin Boyce Leigh? ME.. Which means I was in line to inherit, Edith Taylor….
Me…Edith. HAHA. That actually makes me laugh out loud. Again, I’m not laughing at all the Edith’s out there but I’m laughing at imagining my first name being a name that doesn’t suit my personality or me in the slightest.
Cue the best decision my parents ever made… My parents thankfully chose to still honor my dad’s family’s tradition by giving me the names of my elders but they just took a little more modern approach.. They took Leigh from “Boyce Leigh” and Taylor from “Edith Taylor” and put those two names together to make me, Leigh Taylor Richardson.
And voilà! Here I am! Who would have thought an old family tradition would eventually lead to me and then one day Beauty by Leigh Taylor? I only hope one day I can be as fierce, classy, stylish, educated and compassionate as all the wonderful women I’m named after.
So cheers to family traditions and cheers to those who respect them but also aren’t afraid to break the mold!