A tradition can be a beautiful way to bind a family together. Or it can be a constricting tie, one that brings more conflict than comfort. The real question here isn't about whether this tradition is a cliché. It's whether this tradition helps cement a bond—or tries too hard to establish one that isn't really there.
I can picture you now, a little girl reading about the marvels of the pyramids, the incredible beauty of the hieroglyphics, the wonders of King Tut’s tomb, and the gods and goddesses and legendary kings and queens that inspired Egyptian culture. It probably seemed so fascinatingly beautiful, so far-off and thrilling. The name Isis—which refers to the ancient Egyptian goddess of marriage, motherhood, and fertility—represents all of that to you: the beauty, the enchantment, the wonder of a dream come true.
- Nameless for Now
You are in a tough spot, aren't you? You say you've compromised, but what you've really done is put off your decision—and you've rescheduled it for a time when you'll be under more pressure to make a choice, and have far less energy to think rationally. The time to solve this quandary is now.
- Worried About Weird
Atlas may seem like a big name for a little baby. In Greek mythology, Atlas was a Titan who was sentenced to carry the weight of the entire world on his shoulders. His name evokes both strength and suffering, in contrast to Callum, which suggests calmness and peace. Atlas is also associated with globes and maps.
Sometimes it's harder to name that second (or third, or fourth) baby. When we make such a big decision, parameters or restrictions can be helpful, since they narrow down our options. But as you've seen, they also lock us out of some our favorites. If your firstborn is Abraham, you probably can’t use Lincoln for your second, no matter how much you love it. Ditto for Sara and Clara or Jack and Jill.
A few years back, I offered some thoughts on too-close-for-comfort names: "Are other people likely to get the two names mixed up? If you holler upstairs to one child, will your kids be able to tell who you're asking for? Does it feel like you gave each child a distinct identity?" In that same post, I advised against rhyming names, which puts Ollie right out of the running for your family. Oliver, though, is trickier.
-- Momma 2 5
You're facing a sad irony of baby naming. It's the parents who put in the most effort -- spending months agonizing over the name, determined that their choice be "just perfect" -- who [LINK]face the greatest chance of regrets. The process ends up numbing your gut feelings about what you love, while raising your expectations to unreachable levels.
The good news is that you've chosen a fine name. If you keep it you'll almost surely find that your daughter grows into it, and you'll end up loving it as part of her.
-- Searching Mom
Let me start by pointing out what you didn't ask: "Who were some prominent women in the Bible?" Chances are you're already familiar with women like matriarchs Sarah and Rebecca, and with Mary and Elizabeth, the mothers of Jesus and John the Baptist. I don't even think you'd be satisfied if I pointed you toward additional admirable women whose names are less common, like Eunice and Dorcas.
So what is it you're looking for? My guess is your question could be rephrased as, "Where are all of the girls' names to go with boys like Elijah, Gabriel and Josiah?"
I haven't heard of it, but it's a timely update on tradition that could certainly work. After all, there are Juniors called Deuce for "second" and Thirds called Trey and Trip. That style of nickname can help distinguish father and son better than "Big Tim" and "Little Tim" -- and they're often more stylish than traditional nicknames, too.
We plan to have more children together, and it's always been important to me to change my name to my husband's so that everyone in the family has the same last name. But I'm really torn here. I don't want his 8-year-old daughter to feel like I'm "stealing" her name, or to resent me for it now or later in life. I also expect that it may cause some confusion with mail, official documents, etc.Unfortunately our name is so short that going by a nickname isn't a possibility.
Am I dooming her (and us both) to a lifetime of confusion: "Nooo, thats my Stepmother, Marie B Clark, I'm Marie A Clark." Or am I overthinking this?
- Evil Stepmother, the Name Thief
Rest assured, you're no Name Thief. You and your soon-to-be stepdaughter are just the victims of bad name luck. But as in so many family naming dilemmas, the right path will depend on relationships as much as names.
You've mentioned that you're nervous about becoming a stepmother, which is natural. How well have you gotten to know the kids? Do they know yet about their dad's upcoming marriage, and if so, how do they feel about it? And critically, how does Dad himself feel about the name conflict?