Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Sometimes Choosing a Baby Name is Actually Easy…

I mean, I have heard about the terror parents have gone through in choosing baby names. It sounds very difficult and quite horrible.
Mama wants a cute, hip name that simultaneously honors her favorite childhood rock band AND her beloved grandmother. Dada wants a short, basic name that other kids won’t make fun of (i.e., doesn’t rhyme with “poopy”) and is easy for him to remember. Or maybe vice versa. Either way, the process turns into an argument, which then turns into a battle, which then, after weeks and months of verbal arm wrestling, results in mama getting her way because, after all, she’s the one CARRYING the baby for nine months while dada uses her as a perpetual designated driver. And if mama doesn’t LIKE the baby name, she might just keep the baby inside her FOREVER.
I’m glad to say C and I have NOT had any problem choosing our children’s names.  I give myself a little credit, for having self-edited my list of favorite baby names BEFORE approaching the subject matter with my husband. When I was pregnant with our first baby, I KNEW C wouldn’t approve of “Liberty Moon” or “Everly Song” or “Madly Fawn” or other such beautiful yet slightly crazy names.  But one day, when I was a few months pregnant, I felt good about presenting  C with the idea of “Ember,” as our daughter’s first name, and was pleasantly surprised when C said he actually really LIKED the name.  And that was it. Done deal.
Now rest assured, if my husband had asked that we instead name our child “Pilot Inspektor Riesgaf Lee” (Jason Lee, what were you thinking???), or “Diva Thin Muffin” (Frank Zappa’s poor child… what the heck IS a diva thin muffin anyway? A delicious yet low calorie, totally decked out breakfast treat?), I would have had issues.  We would have had to do some serious compromising. I probably would have promised to do all of the dishes and laundry for 15 years in exchange for NOT naming them some whacky pants name.
(Hmmm… this MAY actually be a good idea for those of you who will be having children in future years. Come up with some totally off-the-wall, nut job name for your kid-to-be, pretend you are ABSOLUTELY attached to the name, and then use that as leverage to get your partner to agree to many years of servitude in exchange for never uttering your suggested name in the household ever ever again for as long as you both shall live).
With our second child, we had our girl name AND our boy name picked out within the first eight weeks of my pregnancy, and no arguments were involved. I swear! We had our boy’s first name “on reserve” from  when I was pregnant with Emmy – it’s a name that C and I both love and agree is strong yet ethereal, and simple but not TOO easy. Our girl name alternative was “Delilah,” mostly based on the fact that the song “Hey There Delilah” was one of the first songs we ever danced to together.  I was kind of looking forward to having a daughter named Delilah, but am totally happy with the name of our son-to-be.
(I can’t share the first name, because even though many of my family members and friends already know the name, there are some family members who are sort of superstitious about this kind of stuff, and prefer to only learn the name upon the baby’s birth. But you can bet your sweet bippy I will be posting our baby’s birth announcement online as soon as my little fingers have access to a keyboard, post-baby birth).
We decided to modify our son’s middle name just a few weeks ago. The boy middle name we had planned for baby #1 was “Ash,” but after having 18 months to ponder that middle name, I began to have doubts. I told C I thought the name was a little on the morose side.  And plus besides, Ash seems like it would be a good name for a contestant on The Bachelorette, but not for our baby.
When my mom-in-law and I were at my 13 week ultrasound together, and discovered we would be having a son/grandson, I told her the name we had picked out for the baby, but that we weren’t too thrilled with the middle name. Mom immediately suggested that we use Henry as the middle name, since it is a family name that has been passed down like a tradition through C’s father ‘s side of the family. I loved the idea, and when I called C after the appointment to ask him if the change of name met his approval, C was equally enthusiastic.
So now we have our son’s name fully picked out, and neither C nor I have any war wounds or scars to show for it. Yay, us!
Now if only we could agree on who’s turn it is to do laundry… J


  1. I love the names you've picked! And that's great advice...pick a name I'm not attached to but pretend to be for leverage. You are devious my love!

    Seriously, you guys rock at picking names.

    Frank and I have talked about it and agreed that we'll pick several names leading up to the day and then choose which name upon meeting them. I also don't want to know if I'm having a boy or a girl until they arrive. You know, whenever that time comes for us. ;)

    1. I think your plan sounds terrific. Of course, if I let myself be inspired by my son's personality in trying to figure out an appropriate name for him, his name would probably be "Spread Eagle" :)