Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Name Game

Yesterday I over analyzed kid birthday parties, today I'll demonstrate how I over analyze name picking. That's an acceptable thing to over analyze though, right? I mean, naming an other human being is kind of a big deal, isn't it?

First, during my morning swim I realized I'm just not going to find a name I love as much as Nell and Reid. I'm not. I accept that. Well, I mostly accept that. I probably need to accept that, because once I do it will be easier to move on and pick a name for this little bean. I just love everything about the names Nell and Reid. They are both old fashioned, which is a trend right now, but neither of them are trendy. They're a way of being "in style" without being super common. Also, they aren't gross old fashioned names. I'm all about the old fashioned name revival -- but some names need to stay in the past. Both names have some family history for me, and Reid just sounds bold and strong and Nell sounds feminine and independent. Best of all, they go so well together. More than anything, I feel like I can't find a name that we both love that matches the vibe Reid and Nell set. There are other names I love, but they feel out of whack with big brother and big sister's names.

Meet Nara and Coraline.  I've always wanted a little Nara, and I'm falling in love with Ben's suggestion of Coraline. He also suggested Anne, Rose, and Pearl, but I've vetoed those (I offered Rosalie and mentioned I preferred Anna to Anne, but those comments didn't seem to interest him).

I knew a Narra in Singapore. Her full name is Enknahran. Here's some cool facts about Mongolian names. First, they have just one name, no middle names, no surnames. Legally, you get one name. And, names are always words. Enknahran is the Mongolian word for "Sunshine." Some other things I've learned about the name Nara, since falling in love with it back in 2005, Nara is an Old English name (like Reid and Nell), but obviously not a common one. It is most common as a greek name, which means happy. The other two languages it is most common in (both as a word and a name) are Hindi and Japanese. In India (and other Hindi speaking countries) it is a male name, meaning man. In Japan it is a female name and also, more recognizable, the name of a providence and a capital city. So in Japanese it means place. I fell like that gives it two wins and and two strikes. What happens when she meets Hindi speakers and they're like "Your parents named you man?"

When I tell most people I love the name Nara they think of Nora. I love my name, so I'm obviously okay with names that appear to be a different spelling of a more common name, but I do hate when people call me Eee-lizabeth. Which is rare, most people do pronounce it Alizabeth. When it is pronounced Eee-lizabeth I cringe a little inside. Elizabeth is NOT my name. Such a little technicality, I know. But it's a big thing for me. So, am I setting Nara up for a life of being mistakenly called something that isn't here name?

Which brings us to Coraline. Ben loves it but wonders the same thing, are we setting her up for a life of being mistakenly called the wrong name? Probably. I like the name Coraline. I like that it's a name Ben choose, since I suggested (and he obliged) to Reid and Nell. I like that it is unique (like Reid and Nell). But, unlike Reid and Nell, Coraline isn't old fashioned, or strong, or short, or family. Although, Ben's mom's name is Carolyn Margaret and if we go with Coraline we will pair it with Margaret, and I think that's a close enough resemblance to make it feel like a family name of sorts (to be clear, Nell isn't directly in the family either, Nels is -- so they are both subtle changes to family names). To me, Coraline is cute and fun and that makes it distinctly different from Reid and Nell. See, I'm totally over thinking this.

Really, things would be so much easier if I knew whether or not there would be a #4, and what gender that #4 is going to be. I just need to name all my kids at once! If I knew #4 was going to be a girl I'd go with Nara and then name #4 Coraline. But if we use Coraline first I feel like we have to abandon Nara forever. Why? Well, because I can't control the nicknames for Coraline, and Cora is an obvious one. Nara and Cora are just too similar to be sisters. But if Nara comes first, maybe Cora will never catch on. But also, if we go with Nara are we then stuck with four letter names? Oh, all the things to think about! Coraline moves us away from the four letters and the old fashioned, which is okay because the other boy names we like are Caleb and Winston. I prefer Winston, but Caleb does go well with Coraline. Winston does too, and they are both protagonists in two of Ben's favorite books (and both his suggestions).

Anyway, in case #4 is a girl, and in case I find myself once again looking for girl names, I'm going to share some of the suggestions from my facebook thread. The thread that received 84 comments, holy smokes sharing name suggestions is popular! I specifically asked for old fashioned, four letter names, here are my favorite suggestions: Ella, Elsie, Jane, Leah, Lucy, Sara, Kate, Abigail, Marie, and Maren (I'm kind of falling in love with Maren, it comes from both my mom and dad's side, maternal ancestor spelled it Maryn and paternal ancestor spelled it Maran).

I have so many more thoughts on naming this baby girl, but I'll stop boring you now. 

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...