Confession: I read a lot of baby name blogs. I am. not. pregnant. I just love names. Always have. I bought my first copy of Beyond Jennifer and Jason when I was twelve and furiously highlighted, annotated, and made lists of my favorite names for my progeny.
I still have that book, but I no longer think I’ll bestow the name “Maevyn” on my first-born daughter.
I had to explain this obsession to Will early on so he wouldn’t think I was rushing us along to the next phase in life. Now, he’s completely used to me calling out, “What do you think of the name Bridget?” apropos of nothing.
I kept my name lists to myself for a long time because I thought I was alone in my obsession; that the only other people interested in names had an impending 9-month deadline.
How wrong I was. There are tons of name nerds out there discussing the merits of various monikers. Thank you, internet.
Once I’m comfortable with someone (read: 5 minutes after meeting them), I’m likely to ask my Name Questions.
How did your parents pick your name? Most common answer: in honor of a family member.
What’s your middle name? Most common answers: Marie and Lynn (for my early-80s lady-friends).
What would your name have been if you were the other gender? Most common answer: (crickets). Best answer: A very girly name for my very manly friend. My answer: George Bradford, for the record.
I love learning sibling names, too. It’s interesting to think about how names go together. My mother and her sisters have perfectly-fitting names, if I do say so: Mary, Martha, Rebecca, and Sarah. We tend to think our names go with our siblings regardless as we are so used to hearing them together (“Helena and Kerry” are a wonderful sibling set, for instance).
I also adore hearing name lists from others afflicted with my moniker obsession. So much about your own name (how common it is, how easy to say/spell it is) that flows into your list of favorite names. Everyone loves an armchair psychologist, no?
(Tomorrow, I will discuss my feelings about my own name).