Sunday, 12 September 2010

The Responsibility of Naming Your Child

Picking the future name for your child has got to be one of the most monumental decisions that you make for your child. One that is made usually prior to the child being born and that will stick with the child for the rest of their lives. Studies have shown that their name can determine their social status, their personality and so on.

The first time I heard the name Finley I somehow knew that I would one day name my future daughter that should I blessed to have children.  Finley is traditionally a boys name and traditionally spelled Findlay. It is of Scottish origin and means fair haired courageous one or fair hero. I also appreciated the fact that it was an uncommon name here in Canada generally speaking and even more so being a girl’s name. 

My mom’s maiden name is Taggart which is why Finley’s middle name is also very masculine. Regardless of the sex, the middle name was going to be Taggart. I wanted to honour my grandparents who were no longer with us and of course my mom. They all played an instrumental part of my life growing up and I wanted that to be reflected in my first child’s name. Taggart is Irish and is taken from McTaggart. It means “Son of the Priest”. 

So on October 29th, 2008 Finley Taggart came into this world. I think it suits her, I can’t imagine her being named anything else but maybe that’s just me. I love how unique it is, but am constantly annoyed when I call to make appointments or say her name, they refer to her as a boy – even if it is in person and she is decked out in pink. 

This time round, it was much more difficult. I had what I thought were 3 perfect baby girl names with Finley being on top and then 2 additional ones. However, for many reasons, the two perfect names were no longer perfect.

At times, we thought we had the name. We agreed on a bunch but I kept bailing on them. For one reason or another, I vetoed every single name. About two weeks before she was born, we decided that this name was going to be it. We even went and bought the letters from Michaels. But that name was also eventually vetoed because I kept having negative feelings overtime I thought about it. For some reason, this name remained on Greg’s list. (for the record, the name was Esme).

So back to square one we were. 

Greg emailed me his list of top 5 names. I hated all of them. I emailed him my final 8. He hated all of them. I was a little stressed out since basically the c-section was less then a week away and there was still the possibility that I could go into labor at any time. So the Friday before she was born, we were watching TV and Greg was on his laptop looking up names. He suggested a few which I of course vetoed until we came to Penelope. We both liked Penelope instantly and it just kinda grew from that.

Greg liked it because it didn’t have any bad things associated it when he googled Penelope and because it was from one of his favourite cartoons as a child. I loved it because it made me remember the movie Penelope. Penelope showed that you have to accept yourself for who and what you were and loving yourself no matter what.

So although we had different reasons for loving this name, the end result was that we both loved it. And only 11 Penelope’s were born in 2009 – woohoo!

Penelope’s middle name is Grier which is Scottish for Gregory so she is named after her dad. Greg really wanted it as a first name but I didn’t think Grier Florizone sounded all that exciting and I didn’t want the pressure of having to find a 3rd Scottish surname for a first name if we do decide to have another child.

So on August 18th, 2010 Penelope Grier was born. A lot of people were caught off by our choice of baby name. We wanted something unique and uncommon but not completely “out there” and I think we accomplished this. But at the end of the day, all that matters is what we think and we both love it. We just hope Penelope will love it too!

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