You and I were born without choosing to, to parents we did not choose, into bodies we haven’t chosen, into a region of this planet we did not get to choose, during a period of evolutionary history we also did not get to choose.

And we were given a name.

The challenge comes when we grow old and wise enough to put all of life’s circumstances together and begin to question who we really are and what all this life and death stuff means. And we begin to ask, “What do I do with all of this…potential?”

We start to evolve a bit as we grow older and we begin to stir together our experiences, impressions, feelings, memories, and inner workings into a ball of self-actualization and begin formulating our own life…choosing our own path, despite where we came from. We grow. We suffer. We learn. We grow…stronger. Wash, rinse, repeat.

For me, part of my evolution insisted on a name change, and I went from being a “Robirds” to a “Stone” on October 6, 2021.

Looking back through my scattered family tree, I discovered that I had a great-great Grandmother, Eda Stone, a Native American Cherokee who passed away on my birthday (but back in 1914). So using “Stone” as my new last name felt natural and true for my family, and was necessary for me to move forward.

This change has been a challenging and surreal experience, but overall it has been incredibly liberating, to say the least. One more thing that I can control.

I am very proud of who I am…who I am becoming.