Giving birth to my children was easier than giving names to them.
S and I agreed on Neel after 6 months (ok, not on Neel – we loved him from the time we saw him) but on the name Neel. I offered a list of 12 fabulous strong boy names, and S said let’s call him Rohan.
2 1/2 years later, I went into hospital clutching my 110 agreed-upon girl names, and we had another boy. So I agonized over 15 strong boy names, and S said let’s name him Rohan. We went through all the books and all the sites and it became an international naming process, with everyone contributing. The baby was called Nemo because he drank like a fish. Then Yoda, because he looked like a wizened old wise man. He was finally named Nikash under threat. (Srini threatened to call him GilliGilliAppa). Let me also add that no one calls him Nikash. He’s Nik, Niks, Niku, Niki, Appu, Kutta, Nikky Poo, Sweet potato, and even Big Dinosaur (his name for himself).
What is it a name means to us? Do we want our kids to be proud of what they’re called? Do we want them to grow up into their names – Like a Rose or a Veer or a Sundari ?
Naming significant others in the family was tons easier. Like our pup got named Marco Polo, because he walked into the house, and explored every corner, also peeing in each one of them (not that the original Marco Polo did – or at least, I have no proof).
The toys also were named super-fast. One car is actually called Super-fast. Neel has a very descriptive and action-oriented approach to naming. When asked what he wanted to call his little brother, he replied “Rolly Polly Machine”. His stuffed tiger is Ferrari, his stuffed dinosaur is “Green Fire Nose”. And after agonizing over the name of his stuffed dog for all of 2 days, I walked in and asked him “Neel, have you named your doggie ?”
“Not Yet, Mama,” he said, and NOTYET is the doggie’s name ever after. Amen.
Would love to hear from you what you named your kids/ dogs/ spouses/ cars – but the why – and especially the “how” . Was it the letter of a book? Or from the pages of a book? Or some old girlfriend you had a crush on? Or the name of grandparents, in which case, I would be named “Antonio Santana Felicia Anna Maria Cajetan Salvadore da souza”. Sexy, huh?