Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Hello, My name is...

I once thought that naming my baby would be easy. In fact, before we got pregnant, we actually had names all picked out. Names we both agreed on. Names that we could rearrange depending on the birth order of our children. If we have two girls and a boy, these names. A boy, a girl, a boy, those names. Four girls? These. The thing is, now those names seem like they belong to all of our imaginary pre-pregnancy children. And I can't name my real baby a name that belongs to those fake babies! My real baby needs his or her own name! So we're back to square one.

The thing is, I'm pretty opinionated. I know that surprises the lot of you, but it's true. And naming a kid is a big deal. After all, this is what they will be called for the rest of their lives. So, you gotta think about ways kids might tease them, the nicknames they might have, how hard it will be to spell their name, whether they will have to correct their teachers' pronunciations every year, whether is sounds good with Kautzi.... This is tough stuff. Bottom line? The wrong name could really screw a kid up.

You know, I'm beginning to wish I had the kind of relationship with God that Sarah and Abraham had. Not so much the make-you-a-promise-and-then-make-you-wait-300-or-so-years-to-fulfill-it kind of relationship. More just the "you shall name him Isaac" kind of relationship. What I mean is, I wish God would just say, "name your kid, ______ cuz it means _______ and that's pretty cool." And then when people say, "What the heck kind of a name is Naphtali?" (see Genesis 30:8) we could just say, "Hey, don't hassle us, God picked it."

Well, despite my requests that God would speak to me in a dream and tell me what to name my child, I've had no such revelation. So up to this point, our approach has been to set up some rules. (I like rules.)

Here are a few of them:
*Disclaimer: If you or someone you know is named any of these names, we're sorry. We don't think they're bad names, we just don't want our kid to have them. Don't get mad.  We like you.

Eric's Rules:
1. No made-up names. Now this one is debatable and really just comes down to whether or not Eric thinks it's a made-up name. He particularly doesn't like the trend of adding "en" to the end of other names and sounds: Aiden, Jaden, Jaxen, Caedon, Peyton, Clayton, Braden, etc, etc. I have tried to reason with him, but he insists they aren't real names. *See Disclaimer
2. No names that are hard to spell or pronounce. No weird spellings of common names. Ashleigh, Ashlea, Ashly. *See Disclaimer
3. No names that all of the cheerleaders had when we were in high school. Caitlyn, Nikki, Ashley, Katie, Mandy, Brittany, Tiffany. *See Disclaimer
4. No names that Kelsey really really likes. (Just kidding on this one. There's really only one name that fits into this category, but I won't bring it up. Sore subject.)

Kelsey's Rules:
1. No names that will make our child the next Katie or Sarah. *See Disclaimer. Meaning, no names that 500 other kids in the first grade will also have. This is a hard one to predict because you just don't know if the brilliantly unique name you've just chosen for your unborn child is the very same brilliantly generic name that 10,000 other new moms and dads are also choosing.
2. No names that don't have a good nickname. Now this applies if either they don't have a nickname at all or their nickname is terrible. Al. Chuck. Pete. Hmm...I just realized I have uncles with all of those names. Sorry Uncle Al, Uncle Chuck, Uncle Pete. *See Disclaimer!
3. No names that Eric will say in a funny voice. (See previous blogpost)
4. No arbitrary names. It has to mean something. I refuse to pick a name just because it sounds nice. I want a good story behind the name. The trick is to find one with a good story, a cool meaning that also sounds nice.

In all honesty, it's the boy names we're having trouble with. And since everyone seems to think we're having a boy, that's a problem. How do you find a boy's name that's not made up and that 500,000 guys out there don't already have? I'm getting to the point that I might just settle on Eric Jr. and have done with it.

Good thing this kid's not coming for another 6 months. The thing is, come the end of July, we might find out that we're having a girl and we'll be able to avoid the boy name dilemma altogether. Until then, I'm still listening for that still, small voice saying, "You shall name him, Chuck."


Jessica Kahler said...

i'm assuming you're going to have a whole bunch of posts with this same suggestion, however it's not going to stop me from making it.

your shall name your kid: Jessica.

it fits in all the rules...i tried.

and if it's a boy....Pheobo.

Chuck said...


Anonymous said...

Kelsey and Eric,
This is God. Indeed. Believe it. It's not too far past my abilities to speak through your blog. I can type too ya know.

You shall name your child Clive Owen Kautzi. It means "Mighty Warrior". This child will fight for all that is true, for my Name.


Sarah said...

I agree with your rules. Especially the one about not naming her Sarah (I think you will have a girl :). I took a class in college where the young women named Sarah made up 25% of the class.......

eric said...

Jordanne, God doesn't like it when you pretend to be him via blog, especially when you do it for selfish means. He told me so via Twitter.

sara said...

first grade: 5 saras. 3 with 'h's and 2 without. woof.

second grade: 2 saras. sara b and sara j. easy enough.

third grade: 4 saras...and another no 'h' sara b. awesome. also the grade i stopped responding to the first time "sara" was called in an academic setting.

fourth grade: just me...and 4 katies. no lie. still did not, however, respond to the first "sara" call due to already ingrained third grade habits.

fifth grade: me, sarah b, and sara b #2. nightmare for the poor teacher. that's when people started to call me bonness.

middle school: all my sports teams, youth groups and choirs had other sarah and saras.

high school: see middle school.

college: see middle school and add dorm wings.

nursing school: same clinical group with sara bender. and see middle school.

i really do LOVE my name...but have been called by my last name more then my first name since the 5th grade sara b overload. so unless you would like for your child to be called Kautzi for life (which would be kinda cool) i would totally agree with rule # - don't name him/her sara(h), katie or the male equivalents.