2/5/13

What's In A Name

 How did you choose the names of your children?
Do you know the story behind your own name?

I S A A C   L E E

Recently, I was reading this blog post about choosing names, and thought I'd write something similar.
Because, in retrospect, it's kind of a funny story.
It begins in the streets of D.C., when a homeless man touched my stomach and told me I would name my kid Jeremiah. I smiled politely and then immediately (most emphatically) decided that Jeremiah would not be my child's name, since I was, in fact, planning on having a girl, and as a rule, I dislike strangers who touch pregnant women's bellies.

Then I found out I was having a boy.  

So I did what any other self-respecting mama (who had only chosen girl names) would. I bought one of those run-of-the-mill baby name books and started flipping through the pages. All the way to Y.

... Which was how I discovered that Yehudi is actually an honest-to-goodness, bona fide name. Naturally I considered printing birth announcements welcoming YEHUDI HOLGATE into the world (with a big, bold, blue font).  

(I never had any intention of naming my kid Yehudi. I just love practical jokes. Now that I've admitted this, I'm positive no less than thirty Yehudi's will start reading my blog. In which case, I apologize from the bottom of my heart. It's not your fault, after all.)

I made a list. A short list. Yehudi, Jeremiah, Landon, and Liam. (I'm partial to 'L's. She says, so modestly.) I can't honestly say why I picked Liam, but I'll admit that Landon was a by-product of having watched A Walk to Remember (I don't recommend it), and deciding, in what I can only assume was Pregnancy-Induced Insanity, that Shane West (who plays Landon), was incredibly attractive and therefore his name should go on the list. Yes, that was how that went down.

Tim said (and I quote), "I hate it; Landon is a mama's-boy name."

So I pulled The Labor Card and we compromised. We'd name the child Landon if he turned out blond; Liam if brunette. As you can well imagine, with such logical reasoning as that, our child, the offspring of blond-and-brunette parents, had to be a redhead. Flaming orange, actually.

It was just as well. During the course of my twelve hour labor, I had decided (implicitly and without reason), that I absolutely hated both the names I'd chosen. (Disclaimer: I don't actually hate either of these names; I hated being in labor.) My decision was confirmed after his arrival.

Somehow, in that moment, I just knew. His name should be Isaac.

Isaac, for laughter.
Lee, after my mother's middle name.

... But we still occasionally tell people his name is Yehudi.

11 comments:

  1. geez now I'm scared to name my kid Landon!!

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    1. Lauren: I actually really like both Landon and Liam (not Yehudi), and Jeremiah as well. ;) So go for it, if you're having a boy.

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  2. Replies
    1. Yes I am so relieved to be rid of Disqus. It was driving me crazy.

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  3. because I know you missed my comments.

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    1. Hm, I'm beginning to rethink that. ;)

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  4. Great story!! Oh I wish I had known about Yehudi! I wanted a boy, but thought I would have a girl, so I had Hannah chosen. I had no idea what to name a boy. I decided to watch Mission Impossible 3 one weekend, because I love Keri Russell, and Tom Cruise's character's name is Ethan Hunt. I thought, hmmmm.... Tom Cruise is crazy, but I like the name Ethan. That is how I chose :-) Cheezy, I know.

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    1. Ethan is a beautiful name. So is Hannah.

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  5. isaac is one of my favorite names. so lovely. he has the best red hair!!

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    1. Thank you! I'll admit choosing that name made me think he'd be creative ... some kind of artist.

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  6. Thanks for sharing! I love little stories like these.

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