The name Jennifer, especially in my age group, is laughably common. I've spent my life with tons of Jennifer's and while I think the name is pretty, the sheer number of us makes it just a tad boring.
When I was a child, I wanted to change my name to Jennifer alternate's, Genevieve or Guinevere, just to be different, more unique. And over my lifetime, I've been known by a few aliases. My family calls me Jennie (my brother insists on spelling it Jenny, which drives me batty), my college friends and in-laws call me Jenna and everyone I ever met in Massachusetts calls me Jen. My maternal grandmother used to call me Jen-Boo, which I loved, so after she passed away, my sister decided to keep that going. I have one friend who is also authorized to use that name and I love hearing it.
When I was very young, my grandmother gave me a small, laminated card of my name and its meaning, White Wave. These two words had weight. They were significant and made me feel I belonged to the name Jennifer. I have always been most at home on my beloved Cape Cod, where I felt the most free and where I got to be among the people I loved most. I only ever wanted to be on the Cape, frolicking in the surf, doing cartwheels and axels on the low-tide flats, eating ice cream with my grandparents after dinner each night.
While I currently spend most of my days far away from Cape Cod, my name's meaning continues to give me a daily, and deep, connection to the ocean.
No matter where I am, or where I live, I am White Wave.