God's Child, Our Joy

An adoptive family's journey in faith and life

Prepping for Number Two: Boy Names

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So for our first adoption, we discussed names before knowing if we’d end up with a girl or boy. We settled on a name for a girl, but never figured out the boy’s name. Once we found out that we’d be having a girl, we thought it to be fate that we only came up with a girls name.

Fast forward (not too far) into the future, we learned that we’d be adopting again. Thus officially began round two of The Name Game. Not too long after we started, we had picked a beautiful girls name, but continued to struggle with the boy’s name. Fate once again?

Nope. It’s a boy. Now we actually have to figure out a boys name. Last time we had the rule that Steph couldn’t have had a student with that name. While super-restrictive (since as a music teacher she teaches nearly 370 at a time), it wasn’t difficult to find a girls name because the depth of girls names. Boys names are just not as deep.

We removed the hard rule of non-student, but with veto power still attached. This opens up a number of names, but the troubles still remain. We try to avoid top 10 names, but we also like the traditional names. Traditional girls names are not usually as popular, but traditional boys names are. Throw in the fact that we like the classic christian names and the fact that Steph works at a christian school means even more overlap.

I start to refer to him as “The Boy”. We bought an outfit to bring “The Boy” home from the hospital. “The Boy” will be three months old for the 4th of July, is that to early to take him to a baseball game? Eva, are you excited to see “The Boy”. Steph immediately hates this, and moves the name issue to the top of her queue (and thus mine as well).

Thanksgiving I use one of my reference tools to mine for names, namely Thanksgiving NFL football. I’m able to parse out a number of unique names and classic names. However, the evil stares after recommending Ndamukong Arian Klein, Romo Griffin Klein and Brady Tebow Klein mean we are no closer.

Out comes the baby name book. “100,000 Plus Baby Names”. That’s got to be helpful, right? Well……not so much. After reading the 100th name that starts with A, you fall into a trance. You’re not so much contemplating each name, but trying to get through them quickly so that you can move on. The hope is that one jumps off the page, slaps you across the face and exclaims “Pick me! It’s so obvious!”

The book contains so many names that we can throw out before even reading them. To get to 100,000+ names, they include names from many different nationalities and cultures. I ignore names from India, Hawaii, and Africa, for example. I don’t, nor do our birthparents, have any connections to these regions, and naming our child with those names would be akin to me having a tattoo on my body in a language I don’t speak.

At the point, I’m less invested. My motivation has dropped after days of reading incompatible names and my suggestions thrown out immediately due to the student rule. I’m not much better, eliminating names if I know a fictional character or song title with that name.

Steph begins to query friends and family. While best intentioned, this leads to awkward moments. The moment where someone has come up with the most brilliant name ever, perfect fit for you. You hate this name, but you nod and go “uh, maybe?”

So I take a mental break, and wait to restart the process. Then news of the royal baby hits the internet. Suddenly, the royal crazed media is analyzing pictures for baby bumps, mashing up pictures of the two of them to see what the new baby will look like, and of course naming the child. Suddenly, one morning I click on the name link and start looking at names again.

I make a list, and half the names on it are ones either her or I said no to in the past. I felt I needed to reevaluate each name and drop my preconceived notion for each one. I sent it to Steph and we talked through it over dinner at Red Robin (yum). I used the crayon with Eva’s kid’s menu and we marked the yeas and the nays.

By the next day we had cropped the list down to about 4. In a bit of serendipity, our birth mother calls out of the blue. She’s calling to tell us that “The Boy” is an active one, so be ready for an athlete. She asks if we have a name yet. Steph mentions the first name on our list. “Oh my gosh!” Apparently, this happens to be the only name that [birth father] could come up with.

Do we have a name now?

Next post : The Rejects
Not next post : The name


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