Skip to content

Don’t Forget Your Second Wind

Posted in Uncategorized

Today, I am happy to report, I am no longer legally Jennifer Lynne Armintrout. I am Jenny Gallifrey Joel Trout.

If you’re new here, you might be unaware that my real name was Jennifer Lynne Armintrout. You may also be unaware that I used to be a bestselling author under that name. And then everything went to shit.

Like I said, I’ve gotten a lot better. Like, no longer suicidal better. However, a few years of returning to fast food work where I prayed my coworkers wouldn’t find out that I was a failed writer and trying to keep my kids from realizing how poor we were while getting near daily emails congratulating me on big contracts and movie deals that were not mine really soured me on the experience of being Jennifer Armintrout. And let’s just throw on there how much bullying I got as a kid for having that name. Even after things got so much better (and in case I don’t thank you guys enough for that, thank you) and I changed my professional name to Jenny Trout, it still kind of sucked having my past failure and years long mental breakdown hanging over my head every time I signed a check.

So, I changed it. And I threw in nods to some of the things that saved me. Like, The Doctor. As a fully obsessed Doctor Who fan,  I strive to live my life every day like a person The Doctor would be proud of. Hence, I chose Gallifrey as the first of my two new middle names. Gallifrey is the planet the Time Lords hail from, so I thought, “Why not?”

“The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don’t always soften the bad things, but vice versa, the bad things don’t always spoil the good things and make them unimportant.” – The Doctor

And Joel. You guys know where “Joel” comes from. While I’m convinced that at least 50% of you think I’m just joking about my religious worship of Billy Joel, I’m totally not. His music has saved me and shaped so much of the way I live my life now. He’s helped me through so many bad days. He’s changed the way I view my own life and mortality. Lessons I’ve learned from his music and his outlook on life have made me a better person, a more functioning person, and above all, a person who is content with myself and my life. I will probably never get a chance to thank him for that, and there’s no real way I could put the depth of my gratitude into words, at least, into not creepy words that wouldn’t result in a PPO. And maybe it’s creepy to give myself that middle name–no, wait, it’s definitely creepy. But total stranger or not, Mr. Joel is a very big part of my life, and since I’m trying to wash away some bad memories of the past by letting go of the person I used to be, I thought it was apt.

“But I survived all those long lonely days
When it seemed I did not have a friend
Cause all I needed was a little faith
So I could catch my breath and face the world again” – Billy Joel, “You’re Only Human (Second Wind)

So, here I am. Jenny Gallifrey Joel Trout. Living my life, getting my fresh start (well, adding to my already ongoing fresh start) and not being victimized by circumstances beyond my control anymore.

20150429_163018

 

Did you enjoy this post?

Trout Nation content is always free, but you can help keep things going by making a small donation via Ko-fi!

Or, consider becoming a Patreon patron!

50 Comments

  1. Congrats on the name change! Now continue kicking ass and being awesome 🙂

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  2. Honey
    Honey

    Congratulations! I know Trout Nation is having a standing ovation for their Queen. : ) All hail JGJT!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  3. Cpersin
    Cpersin

    You look so lovely and happy. Congrats on continuing your fresh start!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  4. Megan M.
    Megan M.

    Congratulations Jenny!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  5. Gwen Cease
    Gwen Cease

    So happy for you!!! I love your new name and, as someone who changed her own name, welcome to the club. 🙂

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  6. Rin
    Rin

    Congrats and stay strong!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  7. mk
    mk

    That is awesome. Congrats. All good things coming your way.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  8. Bri
    Bri

    Hooray and congratulations! And might I add, you now have one badass name.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  9. xebi
    xebi

    FUCK YES.

    That is all.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  10. Jenny
    Jenny

    Welcome to the Jennys-Who-Are-Not-Jennifer’s club! And congrats on leaving that all behind.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  11. Sushi
    Sushi

    Congrats on your new name! 😀

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  12. Teresa B
    Teresa B

    So awesome! Congrats. Love the sweater!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  13. MrGBH
    MrGBH

    Kickass

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  14. Lieke
    Lieke

    Congratulations! Now you’re officially Jenny Trout, which makes me happy because it makes you happy. And the new middle names are awesome. And you’re awesome. And everything is awesome. In short: yay! (I swear that I am not on something right now).

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  15. Yamichan2
    Yamichan2

    Congratulations!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  16. Cherry
    Cherry

    Congrats on your new, incredibly awesome name! (And also on wearing the most epic of letter-sweaters. )

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  17. Crystal
    Crystal

    Way to go!!! Yeah to new starts!!!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  18. Hannah
    Hannah

    Congratulations!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  19. Alison
    Alison

    Great name! Congrats!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  20. Ashley
    Ashley

    Congrats to you, Jenny. You’re fabulous and your new name is extra-fabulous, so you’re all set.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  21. Candy Apple
    Candy Apple

    So cool! Also, I love the picture.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  22. Laura
    Laura

    It’s like a new birthday! Congratulations. It suits you really well.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  23. Anon123
    Anon123

    Grats!!!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  24. Artemis
    Artemis

    Congrats! Gallifrey makes a beautiful middle name.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  25. cat
    cat

    Congratulations! I bet that feels awesome. I’ve thought about legally changing my name but… lazy. Out of curiosity, why did you not include your husband’s last name? I don’t ask because you are married to him AND SO YOU ARE NOW HIS AND NO LONGER YOUR FATHER’S AND WHERE IS YOUR PERMISSION SLIP but because I assume he changed your life as well. Don’t get me wrong, I have a friend who got married and kept her own name and when she had her first kid, said kid got her last name (don’t know about the second kid because they were super religious when she was born). And if I ever somehow deigned to marry again, I’d keep my maiden name because I just like it.

    So just asking out of curiosity because of your reasons for your ‘new’/’correct’ name.

    Rock on

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
    • JennyTrout
      JennyTrout

      Just to protect his privacy and the kids’ privacy, since it’s their name, too. 😀

      April 30, 2015
      |Reply
      • cat
        cat

        Ah, superb reason. I doff my cap to you my dear lady.

        Although, in retrospect, what a shitty reason. Not you, please don’t think that, but the need to do that. I truly appreciate that you aren’t one of those “HATERZ!! HATERZ EVERYWHERE” sorts so I really do appreciate what you mean (I watched what happened with the historical rape but it’s OK book stuff).

        But what a sad society we have become that our very names can cause harm to our loved ones. If I’d had it my way, my ex husband would have agreed to change our last names to either Awesome or Amazing (“Don’t forget darling, we are having the Amazings over tonight…”). I think that would work with any fall out.

        As I said before, rock on and carry on doing what you do because I love you and spread your blog whenever I can.

        April 30, 2015
        |Reply
        • Raging Brainer
          Raging Brainer

          You just gave me the idea to change my last name to Isawesome. That would be awesome.

          May 2, 2015
          |Reply
  26. Nicolette
    Nicolette

    Congratulations! (Gallifrey Joel is awesome beyond words.)

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  27. Congrats, Jenny! I felt much the same when I changed my name to get rid of my bio-sire’s surname and just keep my mom’s (as well as adding a couple of middle names). I did it just before I graduated from University, because I didn’t want *his* name on MY degree that I’d worked so hard for and he’d contributed NOTHING to. It was extremely liberating.

    (Not so liberating is the long process of changing all of my documentation. But it’s the price I pay to be my own person.)

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  28. chexbb
    chexbb

    I never leave comments, but I just wanted to say a) I also unironically worship Billy Joel and listen to “Vienna” on loop when I have bad days; b) I check your blog like eight times a day because you are so funny and eloquent (in desperation I’ve started rereading the Fifty Shades of Grey recaps); and c) bravo for your name change! I’m getting married soon and have thought a lot about my name as a result. Names are so powerful (they’re like literal incantations). Taking control of your name is like taking control of you. Congrats to you for the change and for picking such an awesome name.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  29. Congratulations, although your old middle name was almost the same as mine. As someone who changed her legal name for similar reasons, congratulations. Seriously.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  30. Amber
    Amber

    Yay! Congrats. Changing names is a miserable, messy process here, so I hope it was easier where you are. 😀

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  31. Congrats 🙂 I’m glad things worked out for you. I’ve never thought before about the process of changing a name, but I assume given your rather happy relief that any stress that came from it was worth it.

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  32. Petra Newman
    Petra Newman

    Congrats Jen. I’m so glad this finally went through and you look so happy in the picture. I think there a lot to be said for taking a moment and marking the fact that you’ve come through a tough period in your life and made it out the other side. Sometimes we get so caught up in the ‘day to dayness’ of living that we forget/overlook the need to occasionally take stock and celebrate the good. So hears to you on your new name day!

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  33. Excellent. A new name and a shiny new start! You are on the way already but you can go so much further… hugs

    April 30, 2015
    |Reply
  34. bunny
    bunny

    Congrats!

    May 1, 2015
    |Reply
  35. I have been a devoted follower of your blog for a time now, and I haven’t commented before, but this is fantastic and I’m so glad for you! 🙂

    May 1, 2015
    |Reply
  36. Sarah
    Sarah

    Congratulations.

    May 1, 2015
    |Reply
  37. What an awesome new name- Doctor Who is a huge part of my life too, so the Gallifrey made me smile. And you look fucking awesome in that picture!

    May 1, 2015
    |Reply
  38. Rhiannon
    Rhiannon

    Congrats on the new name! I remember you saying on Twitter that it was quite difficult to change names in your state, so I’m glad to hear you managed it! You look great in the photo too, really happy.

    May 1, 2015
    |Reply
  39. the-greatest-dragon
    the-greatest-dragon

    You go, Jen-nay! (I’m sorry, I’m the worst. No more Forrest Gump, I promise)

    That’s really amazing. Like, you’re pretty much living the nerd dream right now and I’m so glad that makes you happy and I think that it’s wonderful you’ve found something to give you a great reminder of how far you’ve come. Sometimes it’s even the “smallest” changes that make the biggest difference.

    (I know changing your name isn’t small potatoes to you, I just mean in the grand scheme of life, you know.)

    May 1, 2015
    |Reply
  40. Congrats lady! You rock, and it’s wonderful that things are turning around for you. Enjoy your epic new name! ^_^

    May 1, 2015
    |Reply
  41. Wil
    Wil

    Congratulations!!! Awesome name!

    May 2, 2015
    |Reply
  42. Tabby
    Tabby

    Congratulations Jenny! I particularly like Gallifrey as a name 🙂

    May 2, 2015
    |Reply
  43. EAG46
    EAG46

    Congratulations to you and to your new name and to the new beginning it gives you, Jenny. You look so happy in your photo.

    May 3, 2015
    |Reply
  44. Terri
    Terri

    Congratulations to you. I applaud your excellent name choices.

    May 4, 2015
    |Reply
  45. Selena Durante
    Selena Durante

    Brava, JGJT! (De-lurking to add my congratulations to the pile.)

    May 27, 2015
    |Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *