Isaiah has moved on. No longer does he introduce himself to others as Pablo (as in, Pablo the penguin from the Backyardigans). While I realize that he is old enough to move away from the Backyardigans, although he does still like to watch the show, it is a bit sad to realize that he’s growing up, too.
Mario is obviously from MarioKart and from Mario Bros. Isaiah likes to play the Wii and as such, he’s learned who Mario is. Mario is not the character he uses when he plays “the game called racing” (otherwise known as MarioKart) but it is the name that he’s focused on.
Since his school had spring break last week, Amy took Isaiah to a friend’s house for her to watch during the day. Jamie also watches two other children and when the mother came to drop them off, Isaiah introduced himself to her as Mario. She laughed and Jamie explained that was his pretend second name. (That’s a big improvement over “My first name is Isaiah and my second name is Piggybank” that we had for several months. We have not figured out where he got Piggybank or why he used it. Isaiah has his own thought process on that one.)
Amy has been slowly trying to approach Isaiah with a name change. She would like to change his given name to reflect his life and his family now – not continue to be a reflection of the man who has abandoned him. My ex-SIL has not attempted to contact Isaiah in over a year; he’s not seen him since Christmas 2006 and has only talked to him on the phone if Amy was the one who made the telephone call, usually to Isaiah’s grandmother because she didn’t actually have a phone number or address for his father. This man has quit paying child support, works under the table for cash, has moved and not provided even his own mother with his address or phone number (he’s afraid she’ll give it to Amy, and she probably would because she thinks her son should be held responsible for his child support), has remarried a woman with six kids, and has really put out no effort to be a father to his son. Yesterday in family court, Amy was awarded sole custody, sole physical custody, and sole control. Her ex did not show up for court (the paperwork was sent to his last known address – his mother’s house) and she was awarded a default judgment. He will still continue to rack up child support debt but he has no rights to Isaiah at all. Next, Amy’s goal is to legally change Isaiah’s name.
That brings us back to “Mario.” We asked Isaiah if he’d like his middle name to be Keith after his uncle and his grandpa, or if he’d like it to be Patrick after his great-grandmother (my mom – Patricia and his GiGi). He said he liked Mario and he’d like for his name to be that. No matter what Amy said, Isaiah kept coming back to Mario.
Finally, last night I explained to Isaiah we were looking for a real “second” name – not a pretend second name. He could still have his second name for pretend to be anything he wanted. He said, “Oh you mean like my first name is Isaiah and my second name is Piggybank?” I said yes, but that he needed to pick a new “real” second name and did he want Patrick, like GiGi, or Keith, like grandpa and Uncle Keith.
It was an instant decision – he wants his name to be like grandpa’s and Uncle Keith’s. So, as soon as she can arrange it, he will legally become Isaiah Keith.