What did I learn this week?

What’s in a name?

Every parent goes through the process of trying to pick the right name for a new baby. Probably everyone finds it difficult. It is hard to pick a name that you like, then even harder to find one your partner likes, and harder still if you are also concerned that other family members and the general public will like it too.

It was quite early on in my pregnancy that I discovered the name that I want to give to our new son. I tried to explain to Corey that I just felt like that was his name. After some discussion, we did decide that we both liked it, and consequently, that is what C has called the baby ever since.

With a person like C, I thought it best to personalize the baby as soon as possible, that is, to make the baby a real person and not some abstract thing. This seems to have worked, in that she talks about him as part of our family, and even about things she will teach him, clothes of hers that she will give him when she outgrows, and how she will hold his hand when he crosses the street in order to keep him safe. Of course, this is not to say that I anticipate everything will be wine and roses after he arrives – I am quite sure there will be lots of issues to deal with! But, I do feel we have done our best to prepare her for the big changes that are ahead in her life.

So back to the name. Early on, Corey tested it out with someone who reacted quite negatively to it, and has really had doubts ever since. I told him not to tell anyone else until the baby was born, because when you discuss names before a birth, for some reason people think it is OK to tell you how much they dislike your choice (like it is any of their business in the first place). I can’t think of anyone who would react in the same way if they were introduced to a baby who had already been given the same name.

The name is not weird or hard to spell, or even unheard of as a proper name (I even found it listed in a baby naming book under “literary names”), it is just a little bit different. That is, it is not Jake, Joshua, Ethan, or Benjamin. But what is wrong with being different? I agree that naming a child is serious business, but I can’t discard the name that I feel belongs to this little boy just because it is a little different. At the same time, I am torn by Corey’s doubt, and want more than anything for him to embrace the name given to his son.

This is a tough one.

5 Responses to “What’s in a name?”

  1. His name is great – have no second thoughts.

  2. Thanks for the input Rod – Corey has now said is again on board with the name choice! 🙂

  3. Greg and I struggled a lot with a boy’s name for baby number two. We had Amy picked out from day one (well I’ve had it picked out for over 20 years and thankfully Greg agreed to it). But we had a lot of trouble coming up with a boy’s name we both loved. It wasn’t that we didn’t agree, it was that we weren’t passionate about any names we had come up with. And we love Elliot’s name so much, so it was hard to top it.

    We short-listed it to about eight, and I made the mistake of going over them with some family and friends. Like Corey, I got some negative reactions, and it spoiled a few of the names for me. About three days before the baby was born, I came up with yet another name, told no one but Greg, and we decided we both really liked it. And then, of course, Amy was born, and we didn’t need to use it. 🙂

    Anyway, can’t wait to meet the little guy (and find out what his name is!).

  4. I agree with Rod. I love the name. Your child will appreciate that his name has strength, is easy to spell, easy to pronounce and is unique enough to be interesting without being weird. Trust your instincts. It is not like you to doubt . Your children don’t want bland — they expect more from you 🙂 including the unexpected.

  5. Oh we went through the same thing with both kids and still get some odd looks and mispronunciations when we introduce Laird. I can’t wait to meet the new little guy too! I hope C doesn’t give him too many dresses to wear!!

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