The next morning, I sent my daughter to school with a corrected name badge.
Two days later, Camber came home with a stack of papers stuffed inside a folder labeled "Amber." The day after that, my daughter brought home a note addressed to "Amber's Mom."
"I'm beginning to wonder if this teacher is playing with a full deck," I told my friend Tina, whose daughter is in the same class at school. Tina confessed that she had similar concerns. Her daughter Leah had been coming home with notes and binders and forms labeled simply "Le."
My suspicion of foul play was confirmed when I asked my daughter to write her full name on a piece of paper.
"Why did you write 'Amber' when your name is 'Camber?'" I asked.
"Because that's my new name," she said matter-of-factly.
Upon further interrogation, I learned that my daughter and her friend are united by a cruel but not insurmountable fate: neither was blessed at birth with a nickname. Tired of watching their classmates Katie, Maddie, and Nikki hog all the glory, they decided to take matters into their own hands. When asked by her new teacher what she preferred to be called this school year, my daughter chose fossilized tree resin. Her friend picked the definite article used for masculine nouns in French.
"Amber is a very pretty name, but I would prefer if you went by the name that your Dad and I gave you," I told her.
Amber ignored me.
My husband told me not to take my daughter's name change personally. "At least her new name isn't weird," he told me. Then he reminded me of the nickname that I chose for myself when I was seven. Inspired by my love of flying horses and secret belief that I was one, in the second grade I answered only to the name of Peggy.
Have your kids made up their own nicknames? If so, what are they?!