Apparently in 1970, Lesley was the 333rd most popular (?) girl’s name. Growing up, it was a long time before I met any other Lesleys. I never had my name spelled correctly nor did I have the coveted bike license plate with my name on it as my parents had chosen the female spelling of Lesley (vs the male Leslie).
In contrast, my older sister Lisa could find her name on EVERYTHING. I recall many times in almost any store that sold “name” items like key chains, book markers, pens, and of course the ever desired bike plate, I would spin the display and search earnestly for my name. Sometimes I found Leslie (often in boy colours) but I always found Lisa. At some point in my young life, one of my parents shared that they considered naming me Heather but went with Lesley as it started with an L to match Lisa. Heather, like Lisa, was everywhere too.
In Grade 5, I started playing with the spelling of my name. We were doing an art project where your name was written in script and then mirrored underneath. The “y “at the end of my name made things look messy so I wrote my name as Lesli instead. I tried that out for a week or so but it never stuck. Back to Lesley I went. Interesting that not once did I consider Leslie.
Jump to high school where I started to embrace my spelling but was critical of pronunciation. My long time friend Nicole would be able to tell stories of the scathing look and quick correction I gave to people who pronounced my name as if the s was a z (which was not a problem when I met Rob, the first sign of true ❤️). High school is also where I started to meet some other Lesleys. Almost every one was a Lesley Anne like me or a Lesley Ann (close enough as they were part of the “ey” clan) and one Lesley Gail.
Launch into adulthood and I like my name (thanks Mom and Dad!) My only complaint is that it is still spelled incorrectly on a regular basis. I find it comical that someone will write my email address in correctly and then start the email with “Hi Leslie…”
Details people, details! They are important.