Monday, April 30, 2007

What's in a name?

….quite a lot actually. I don’t know many people who actively like their names. I can’t bear mine. “Gillian” is such a stupid name. It sounds like Jillian, so nine times out of ten people spell it wrong. Then, I have people calling me Gill(i.e gills of a fish)-ian. Dreadful. My second name is Donna and that I can just about live with.

Naming a baby is such a huge responsibility. The name that seemed cute and quirky at birth, may become the cross that poor child has to bear through high school and beyond – "Apple Martin" comes to mind… what was Gwyneth Paltrow thinking?!

Grant and I gave a lot of thought to naming our girls. I wanted them to have names that they liked, that were not too common, but not too outlandish or silly. I wanted the names to have a nice meaning too.

We were also very aware of the importance of initials – always in the back of my mind lurked the story of the “friend of a friend”, whose father on going to register her birth, at the very last minute, realized that her initials spelt “FART”! (Impi goes to school with someone called “A. Nuss”) Horrors!

So the naming of my daughters was not a spur of the moment thing. And yet, after all that consideration and deliberation, Roxanne hates her name. I am gutted!

We named Roxanne (which means “dawn”) after a character in the Joy Packer book “Valley of the Vines”. I’d read the book in my teens and immediately fell in love with the name (although in the book it is spelt slightly differently). So, after much debate, we settled on the name “Roxanne” and then began the search for a good second name. Having a fairly longish first name and a long surname, we were on the lookout for a short second name for our babe. We named her after Grant’s gran, Inez. I thought it was lovely, I still do - short and sweet and faintly exotic – she hates it! Won’t even tell anyone that she has a second name. So we now have a daughter named “Roxanne Inez”, who calls herself Rox!

Paula (it means “small one”), on the other hand, loves her name. The only time she gets the mutters is when someone pronounces her name “pow-la”. She likes the fact that she is the only “Paula” in her school. Her second name is “Hope”. It took me a loooong time to successfully fall pregnant with her, I spent many, many months (years in fact) hoping for her, so “Hope” seemed apt. And for the time being, she likes that name too. Thankfully.
LogoThere are
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?


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