In just a few short months (I can’t believe it either), HC and I are going to have to be in agreement on a name so that this kid doesn’t have to live the first days/weeks/months/years of it’s life as Baby Girl/Boy. For longer than I care to think about, HC and I have been discussing names. And the discussions are going no where fast.
We don’t have resolution on what the last name will be. HC and I don’t share a last name. HC, as you would imagine, just assumed that we would give this kid his last name. So much for the rumor that HC was one of these so-called enlightened straight men. I’m not sure what I want to do just yet. I know that hyphenating our last names is out, in part because I would not want a hyphenated name. And I don’t want to make up a last name for this kid based on our last names, because 1) I don’t understand doing that if everyone isn’t taking the same last name, and 2) I have no intention of changing my name.
So it’s not like the name issue is easy. We don’t know the last name yet, and we don’t know the sex. So we need to pick a first name that sounds good with both of our last names, AND names for both a girl and a boy. It takes complicated to a new level.
We agreed that name must be easy for my mother to say (read: easy to say and hear with a New Jersey accent), and it must be easy for my mother to spell. So no ie or ei names, and no names that sound different than you’d spell it. Also, nothing that sounds silly with our last names, nothing on the most popular baby name lists, and nothing that can be easily turned into a playground slur. Beyond that, everything is in play.
You would think that we narrowed the field enough with the rules that we’d be able to find a few names that could work. If you thought this, you’d be wrong. As with everything else we do as a “team”, HC and I are SO not on the same page where names are concerned.
Here’s an example of how deep our divide is.
HC: What about Seamus?
Me: You’re kidding right? 1) I hate it. 2) My mother will never be able to spell it. I can’t even spell it! 3) Little Seman [Last Name]?! No, it’s out.
HC: What about Shea?
Me: What?! Shea? You want my father to go around telling his friends that his first grandchild’s name is Shea? Can you think that through for one second?
HC: What? It’s a nice name.
Me: HC, my father is a rabid Yankee fan. You don’t think he might have an issue with calling his grandkid by the name of the place where the Mets played?
HC: They play at Citifield now.
Me: Don’t be cute. You know that most people in the New York metro area hear Shea and think Mets. Besides, if we go with your last name as the kid’s last name, I don’t want to do an Irish first name. No, it’s out.
HC: Why not?
Me: Because I don’t want to be completely cut out of this kid’s identity. A name is important. It’s a part of who you are. It’s what most of us will be stuck with for the rest of our lives. I find it irritating that I would carry this kid, give birth to it, and be it’s primary caregiver – because let’s be honest, I will be it’s primary caregiver – only to be cut out of this kid’s identity because we gave it your last name and an Irish first name and now this kid is Irish.
HC: This kid will be Irish.
Me: But I’m not Irish. And your last name is unmistakeably Irish. I don’t want to compound the problem by giving this kid an Irish first name.
HC: So what, you want to give it an Italian first name?
Me: No, I’m not saying that either. My last name might sound okay with an Italian first name… or an Irish first name, for that matter. But an Italian first name with an Irish last name sounds crazy to me too. I’m just saying, I don’t want to double up on the Irishness.
[A few minutes pass…]
HC: What about Siobhan?
Me (completely losing my patience): You know what, I’m not even going to explain why this name is completely out.
Me (getting increasing louder): Can my mother spell that? I can’t spell it. Nobody can spell it. And no one will be able to say it. This kid will spend every new introduction – and like 3 or 4 more introductions after that – explaining what it’s name it. And didn’t I just explain the new no-Irish-first-name rule?!
You would think that, following one of these discussions, HC would take my position into account when he suggests names. Nope, not HC. Undaunted, he is. So here we are in the third trimester without even the slightest idea what we’re going to name this kid.
So it might be time to open it up to the Internet. Using the rules listed above, anyone got any ideas?