One Person, Two Birthday’s, Three Names


During the forty years together my uncle took care of everything for my aunt. He ensured their Trust Fund was in order. Their home was paid for. Money was in the bank, even their final arrangements were made and paid for. Everything was taken care of. Now it was to be expected that my aunt would be distraught and things would be forgotten. After all, she just lost her husband, her best friend, her life as she knows it was changing. 

Our main problem was when we went to the bank. At Bank of America you now have to swipe your ATM card in order for the teller to ID you. Well my aunt couldn’t remember her pin and that’s when our problem started. 

In order to reset her pin she needed a valid ID. All she had  was an expired state of Nevada ID card. Since it was expired it was of no value. They then asked for an authorized certified copy of her birth certificate. No can do. 

Since she had a California ID ten years prior. We went to the DMV. Thirty minutes later we were called. They could fined her name in the system but couldn’t renew it because  the birth date was different and it showed the person had a middle initial. My aunt doesn’t have a middle name. So we were instructed to reapply for a new ID and for that we needed an authorized certified birth certificate.  

Well, easy enough we can go to Norwalk Registrar’s office which is about an hour and an half away sign a sworn statement to who she is and wait the three week turnaround or order by mail. 

Since only a few people can obtain an authorized copy of a birth certificate and my aunt had no ID we decided to order by mail. The turnaround is twenty working days. 

We first had to have a notary come out and notarize the request form that it was indeed the registrant ordering the birth certificate. Easy enough, we dropped it in the mail. 

Well, twenty working days was actually a month when you added in weekends and holidays. Everyday my aunt (who is not very patient) would call to tell me she still hasn’t received it. It was a long, long month. 

At last, it arrived. The first thing I noticed was the last name. It appeared to look like the last letter in our family name was an a instead of an i. No biggie, it was my maiden name I can talk around the spelling and since the certificate is hand written an easy mistake. 

I made an appointment for Wednesday at 10:05. My aunt said it was a little too early but she’ll get up. When I mentioned it to Dana she reminded me of Grandparents Day at the preschool so I rescheduled the appointment for Thursday at 11:00. I called my aunt and told her of the change. Now remember, I take care of my mom and my aunt lives an hour and a half away. I leave early enough to arrive thirty minutes early. 

My aunt lives in a 55+ Del Web gated community. When I arrive the guard is not in his office and I’m behind a work truck. While I’m looking ahead at the guard station I see my aunt, walker and all walking fast like a bat out hell. I roll down my window and yell her name to get her attention; she stops and looks up then keeps walking. I yell again she stops and looks up then keeps walking. I figure my voice must sound like an angel why else would she be looking up instead of around to see who’s calling her. 

I back up, give a u-turn and pick her up. She didn’t think I would make it in time so she was going to take the bus. My aunt has not taken a bus since she was a little girl. I wonder if I had not caught her in time, would it have been a hijack situation to the DMV. 

Off we go. We get there in time. I hand the clerk the completed form, and my aunt’s birth certificate. She noticed the error in the last letter of our last name but since it was hand written she didn’t pursue it. What I did not notice was her first name on the certificate it was listed as Marguarita instead of Margaret. Now that I couldn’t talk off. So the clerk said her ID would be as Margaurita . She explained my aunt would have to go to Norwalk and change her name legally. She then informed us her California ID would be in her maiden name. No can do, its bad enough her first name would be different but we needed her married name for the bank. 

We needed her marriage certificate. Off we go. We returned thirty minutes later. Completed form, birth and marriage certificate. The clerk notices a middle initial of R on the marriage certificate another problem, my aunt has no middle name. The clerk knew it was our 3rd visit and said she would enter the name on the birth certificate Marguarita, then do an aka to Margaret, then do an aka to her married name and forget the middle initial. One person three names. 

While entering the aka’s the clerk noticed someone with the same name, different birth date. I told her that we were told that earlier but the clerk let it go. Ok this clerk tells us the person in the system has the name Margaret (not Marguarita) same last name as my aunts married name. The birth date is the same day and month but 1930 instead of 1928. 

The clerk then asks my aunt where she has lived. My aunt gives her the complete addresses for California, Arizona and Nevada. Enough info for her to conclude it was my aunt in her system, so she just renewed what was in the computer. No aka’s, no birth or marriage certificate needed. 

Sixty days for her ID not including weekends and holidays. I am sure it will be sixty long, long days. 

So there you have it one person, three names and two birthdays. 

One exhausted niece.


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