I always liked my name being shortened to the sound of that first letter. The problem was that I never really felt like Jay or Jaye fit me. I love Ys in names until the cows come home but that was not me. Jae was not me either. Then I came across Jai and it was love at first sight. This was Jaimie made shorter but with that same J sound. (Like Jaimie Alexander but many years before I found out she existed, and she continued to not notice me.) I’ve since come to learn that Jaimie is the Scottish feminine version of Jamie which makes me love it even more. But I’m getting off topic, aren’t I?
So, I found Jai.
It was not a common name for a girl at that time, this was *mumbles incoherently something that sounds very close to two decades* ago. It was mispronounced by some, and sometimes I was told it wasn’t allowed to be a girl’s name. (If you know me well you’ll know that telling me that because I am a girl I can’t have something that I want is the right way to make sure I will have it to spite you.)
A few things came to pass, and I began to be a little less comfortable with using Jai, especially when I had a character who had it as the first half of their name. Basically, I let small minded people with rather large mouths ruin something. I became Justine online for the most part again and let Jai be something that mostly stayed in the confines of people in my, shall we say, physical life.
I missed being Jai. And part of it was I missed sharing the parts of who I was that I kept back for fear of judgement.
I’ve been taking a good hard look at life and who I am. At the end of the day, Jai is my chosen name. It’s magical and it is mine and I am taking it back.
Jai had to come back.
Jai le Fae was the stage name I took on when my Belly Dance teacher encouraged us to take on a new persona, a free and brave version of ourselves. This was *coughs and mutters something that sounds like a teen ending word* years ago, and while I stopped Belly Dancing when I moved down to the Bay, the name remained part of me.
Different forces have come into play and I am transforming into a free and brave woman again, who does far more than Belly Dance in the middle of a Turkish restaurant in Papakura or along the Santa Parade route in Howick and…that place with the scary roundabout…what’s it called…Panmure, I think that’s the one. There will be performing in public again, but it will be a far more eclectic experience if I have my way. And Jai is returning with a little change.
My online, stage, author and public persona will all line up together moving forward (and my private will remain just that…private).
To misquote the Rolling Stones…
Please allow me to introduce myself
I am a woman of magic and taste
I’ve been around for a long long year
And I’m ready to lay men’s souls to waste….
Hello, my name is Jai Lefay and I’m back.
Expect this change to roll out, in the coming weeks, over all aspects of social media, places you buy my stories and all other corners of the interwebs. And expect a lot more activity on the blog, but more on that in the next post.