Saturday, August 24, 2013

What's In a Name

My least favorite thing about being pregnant (besides numbness in my hands, not being able to tie my shoes, back pain, outgrowing my clothes, etc. etc.) was choosing a name for the wee one. I never imagined how difficult naming a child could be. Ever since I was little I had written out lists and lists of my favorite baby names. Some names changed over the years and others stayed on the lists from year to year. In fact, I'm pretty sure that each and every one of my childhood/teenage journals has one of these lists within it's covers. I was a dreamer. Always dreaming about what my last name would be, what my children's names would be, etc. 

After making so many baby name lists over the years, you'd think that naming my baby would have been a sinch. No sir. Darin and I were pretty set on naming our boy Shae (Shay, Shea or some other form of the name) from the beginning. We had two other names that we played around with but Shae always seemed like the right one, UNTIL we started telling people. "No, the babies a boy," I said correcting people who asked if it was a girl. "Well, Shea is actually originally a boy's name," I would say as I tried to defend the name. "I mean, it's really just one of those names that could go either way, boy or girl," still trying to convince people that it was okay to name a boy Shae. 

I started to understand why some people choose not to tell anyone what name they have chosen or are considering. It can be stressful hearing everyone's opinions about a name that you are falling in love with. After telling people, I would always feel an inner cringe, bracing myself for the face or response I was about to hear for wanting to name my boy a certain way. 

Plus, this is the name that this little human being will have for the REST of their life. No turning back. That's a big deal! Much bigger than naming my little siblings who acted as my children while playing "house" as a child.

Clearly I got over my issues and freak outs about whether we should name our son Shae, because in case you haven't heard, his name is Shae. However, moving to Virginia still seems to have helped my "Naming-Baby" self-esteem. I've already met a handful of people who have friends (boys!) named Shae. There is even a man in our church congregation named Shay! As I spoke with a lady at church she said, "wait, Shae as a girls name? Never heard of it."  

I think I'll be much better prepared next time I have to name a baby. I'll be ready for the pauses and courteous replies: "Oh, that's unique" "Interesting" "That's...different" "For a boy?" 

Cause you know what, in the end, it really just doesn't matter what anyone else thinks. I mean, Brillante? Really? I can't even begin to imagine the slack that my parents got for that name...and yet here I am.

(This kid has been ALL smiles the last few days and I'm LOVING it--except for about 3:30am to 5am where he has been screaming and we can't figure what's wrong or how to console him--I love these baby smiles! And if you look close enough, or zoom in, in the first picture you can see his two little teeth coming in!)

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