Oh my God..this one was so hard for us. I mean, let's face it, we have all talked about what we want to name our kids. I am pretty sure that my friends and I had deep conversations about this in Junior high. When it comes to actually naming a person though, it is an entirely different story. It's a big deal. Your kid will carry this name for the rest of his/her life. It is the first decision that you make for your child. You don't want to screw it up and end up with a Mike Hunt or a Barb E. Dahl.
Here's the thing. Every single person that you meet in life (aside from your baby) has a name when you meet them. Because of that fact, you never think, "oh, that person doesn't look like a Claire." Because you have always known that person as Claire, they totally seem like a Claire. So, then I ask, how the hell do you come up with a name for this little blank slate? Talk about pressure.
Let me start out by saying that some people have names chosen from the day they get pregnant. Those are generally the same people who have the cute little pregnant bellies and don't throw up once during their pregnancy. It's like this pregnancy/baby bulls*^% is all or nothing. Mine was nothing. I was fat and sick with a nameless baby.
To be fair to my husband and I, there are no girls in his family, so we were really thrown when we found out that Moose was going to be a girl. My husband's dad is one of three boys and my husband has one sibling and 5 first cousins...all boys. Based on that, we just decided to focus on boy's names. If it would have been a boy, we would have been set. Not only would he have had a name, but he also already had nautical themed bedding from Pottery Barn kids all picked out.
Alas though, it was a girl (to my absolute delight) and we were at square 1 for names. The day after we found out it was a girl, my husband came to me with three names, "Dana, Madeline, and Gina." I told him that I would consider Dana and Madeline.
Our first productive step was to just throw names out there, which turned out be a total disaster. The conversations would go something like this:
Me: How about Sam?
Husband: Eww. All Sams are fat.
Me: Are you f'in kidding? What a stupid thing to say. Name one fat Sam.
Husband: I went to school with a Sam in 3rd grade and she was fat. Boom.
Me: Silence, because what can you say to that??
Husband: What the hell is the matter with you? Do you want her to be made fun of? What is with you and these new age names. What happened to normal names?
Me: Okay, how about Laura?
Husband: Seriously, Beck. Do I really want a kid name after Little House on the Prairie. Think outside of the box.
Husband: OH MY GOD! I am so mad that I can't even talk to you right now. That is a boy's name. Why do you love giving boy's names to little girls. Why don't we name her Brian. Or Melvin. How about Harry. Yeah, that's it. Harry. That can be a girl's name too.
Me: A simple no would suffice.
Husband: Oh no...that name can only go one of two ways and they are both extreme. She could either be a stripper or a lady who lives alone with 20 cats.
Me: You do realize that is my name, right?
And so we went to the name book. That thing was my Bible. We read it for 8 straight hours on the way to the beach and were able to come up with a list of about 30 names. On the way home from the beach, we went over the list and realized that we pretty much hated all of the names that we had chosen.
Soon after, we were sitting on the couch and my husband, out of the blue, says: "Let's call her Brumhilda." I know what you are thinking...WTF? As it turns out, Brumhilda was the name of an African American slave in a Quentin Tarantino movie that was getting ready to be released. A normal person would have put her foot down, but I was not a normal person, so, from that point on, she was Brumhilda. Not just to us, but to everyone we knew. I was officially pregnant with a Baby Brumhilda.
Having a Brumhilda did take some of the pressure off because I figured that whatever we came up with had to be better than that. By this time, it was the fall and I had had plenty of time to think and decided that Madeline was a good name. Bam! Case closed...she has a name! I waited until my husband came home from work to tell him the good news. Drumroll please....and...Fail. He had decided that he no longer wanted the name Madeline.
Back to square 1 again. At this point, there was some major stress on the part of both of our mothers. They were entirely convinced that the baby was not going to have a name. I actually wasn't stressed because I was taking comfort in the fact that if we couldn't come up with a name, the government could give her one. They do a fine job with naming hurricanes, so I am sure they have a similar system for babies.
We finally pared it down a bit and went into the hospital with three names: Ella, Morgan, and Myra. As soon as she was born, my husband decided that she looked like a Myra. I, on the other hand, was just so relieved that she did NOT look like a Brumhilda. 'Cause ya never know, right?! On day 2, my husband forced me to decide and I agreed that her name would be Myra.
And, you know what, I love her name. It is feminine, beautiful, and just so her. Here's the thing though. If we had named her Ella, Harper, Sam, Morgan, or Dylan, I would be saying the same thing right now. Because, at the end of the day, it isn't as big of a decision as we made it out to be. So take solace in the fact, that although it is a big decision, if you exert even the slightest bit of commons sense, it is one that it difficult to screw up. When in doubt, just Google "funny fake names" so that you don't end up with an Anita Bath. Or a Brumhilda.