My name is Iyonna. My mama picked this name. She thought she was giving me an African name but she changed the spelling in an attempt to be "different", bless her heart, which changed the origin and entire meaning of my name. You see, Ayana, which is what she was naming me, is Kiswahili for "beautiful flower". I know a number of Ayana's and they are all beautiful people. But when she changed the spelling to Iyonna, I became "gracious". Iyonna is a greek variation of "Hannah", which means "favored, gracious one". There is so much meaning in a name. Which brings me to how I came to be called "Fancy".
Like to hear it, here it go.....
In 2006, one of my bestest friends from high school and college was getting married. Of course I was in the wedding. The venue was perfect. Gorgeous. Regal. Palatial. Just perfect. When I walked in, I knew that the long, flowy dresses she had picked for us would be a perfect fit for the decor of the venue. However, with all gorgeous venues and historical architecture comes marble stairs. This would not have been a problem for me if I did not have to walk up marble stairs, in my long, flowy dress, in front of 125 people. You see, my name means "gracious" BUT I inherited the clumsy gene from my favorite guy in the world, my dad. My dad, who I've seen fall off of the roof, trip over absolutely nothing, come home from EVERY ski trip with some sort of injury. Yeah, I inherited "grace" from that guy. I digress, when the planner was instructing us to walk up the stairs in our long, flowy gowns so that I could stand by my friend while she proclaimed her love to her long time bew, I knew it was a recipe for disaster. So, at the rehearsal, I made the suggestions that our escorts help us up the stairs. I mean, that's the gentlemanly thing to do, right? Only thing is, this small adjustment wasn't what the wedding planner had in mind for our processional, so that meant the entire thing had to be revamped to accommodate Ms. Clumsily Gracious' suggestion. Listen, I know it may sound selfish but I was NOT about to be the one to upstage the entire ceremony by tripping up the stairs. Nope. I ain't gonna do it. My escort thought that my suggestion, while a good one, was very "Fancy" and proceeded to call me Fancy for the duration of the pre-wedding activities.
At first, I was kind of annoyed with him for calling me Fancy but then I started to take to it. I had never had a nickname as a child, as I had always demanded that family called me by my name, so I began to think that "Fancy" was a pretty cool nickname to have. I started incorporating Fancy in my "social media" name. People who knew me agreed with my new alias and people who were just meeting me thought it was my real name. I mean, that word described me perfectly. So, there it is, now I'm Fancy.
Now it's 2014 and I'm living "The Fancy Life". Let me be very clear, my "Fancy Life" ain't no crystal stair. I don't fake or front. I work hard. I have success. I have had failures. I find myself in stressful situations. I get hurt. I get sad. I feel pretty some days and not so pretty on other days. I have perfect hair sometimes but then I go weeks without combing it, so it's not so perfect at other times. I embrace life and all the challenges it has to offer and I am honest about my life, I am Fancy.
In my Fancy journey, I have interacted with all types of people and I develop relationships in some of the most unlikely places. I am a giver. I am a helper. I am a solution finder. I am a resource. I don't claim to know everything, even though my husband will disagree. I live in my truth. I know when to ask questions. The result: People come to me asking for help and I help when I can. If I don't have the answer, there is a 95% chance that I know someone who can help you out or I know someone who knows someone that can help.
Friends and family have been telling me that I have all the answers for a while. They say things like "Fancy be knowing" or "Fancy knows best." I usually laugh it off but yesterday, a friend suggested that I start a Fancy Life secrets blog after I inadvertently provided her with a contact she needed without even knowing she had been looking for it. Thus...."Fancyville" has been revamped and "Secrets to Living the Fancy Life" is born. Let everyone benefit from me and my resources. Even though there are no real secrets about my lifestyle. I want everyone to feel like they can enjoy the Fancy Life right along with me.