Say My Name, Bitch
June 06, 2008
The first thing I said when those bulgy boy parts showed up on the ultrasound screen was something romantic and maternal, along the lines of "oh crap, we don't have any boy names."
We finally decided on Noah's name probably less than a week before he was born -- we'd considered Noah early on but rejected it because of its presence in the top-50 name list, but once things got dire and we agreed on NOTHING ELSE because GODDAMMIT, GEEK HUSBAND, I am not naming my child after anything from the Joss Whedonverse, okay?...we circled back to Noah and went with it, reasoning that it was at least in the LOW end of the top 50.
Noah shot straight on up to number fucking FIVE the following year, of course.
But obviously, with names like "Amy" and "Jason" (both the number-two names from the years we were born), we know that possibly being one of multiple Noahs or Noeahs or Noyahs or Noeyiyahs (the N is silent) in the classroom is far from a horrific, traumatizing experience. I always found it kind of amusing, actually, especially since every Amy I've ever known has the middle name of either Beth or Elizabeth for just that extra dose of unoriginality. Our only complaint about Noah's name is that it makes saying "NO" to him awfully confusing, so we've adopted a "NO THANK YOU" reflex instead. Which is also fine, except that people laugh at me when I'm outside shouting "NO THANK YOU" at my dog, because I can't help it. We're just trying to not crush Ceiba's preshus self-esteem, you know?
We had a back-up name -- Elijah, chosen long before I even got pregnant -- but for some reason it never quite clicked as the right name. "He doesn't look like an Elijah," I frowned after our 3D ultrasound, tilting the photos this way and that. We kept the name mentally in play until Noah's birthday, right up until I saw him for the very first time and blearily announced that "he's SUCH a Noah!" from the operating table.
(We went with the middle name of "Corbin" OSTENSIBLY because of its ties to my maiden name. I wanted to just use Corbett, straight up, but was too cranky to argue about it at the hospital and figured I better just fill out the damn birth certificate before Jason got on IMDB and tried to convince me that my family's name had actually once been spelled with K.)
Jason originally refused to talk names this time until the ultrasound, but got himself so good and convinced we were having a girl that I was not only able to get him involved in multiple conversations about it, but also to tentatively commit to my top pick. (Which...sorry....a couple people have asked for it in the comments but considering the baby DID have his legs together during the ultrasound we are kind of operating on a "hmmm, yeah, MOST LIKELY that's a boy" basis here, so I suppose we should keep our girl name handy in case of a Big Swimsuit Parts Upset down the line. It's a lovely old-fashioned name with a nickname straight out of a futuristic and violent graphic novel series. Because...of course it is. We're fucking nerds.)
So beyond any dreams or hunches or mother's intuition, this fact right here was my primary reason for thinking we'd have another boy. We already had a girl's name. Too easy. No way.
But at the same time I was kind of relishing going back to the drawing board, names wise. The lists! The winnowing down! The absurd wild card suggestions! The endless scanning of movie credits for the perfect name, which I have compulsively done FOR YEARS, even though it has never really yielded anything except for the factoid that a LOT of film gaffers are named Gary.
Any name we'd seriously considered for Noah didn't even make our short list this time, because I maintain that it would be weird to give our second son a name we'd rejected as not quite right for our first. Or maybe I just really enjoy being that difficult. (Or maybe we were just REALLY entranced with old Biblical -ah names, like Micah and Jonah and Elijah and Judah and if we went with any of those now, people would think we named our kids to be a matchy-matching set.)
ANYWAY, OH MY GOD. Wednesday afternoon I emailed Jason my top three boy names. He emailed back and said he liked <Choice A>. In fact, he liked it a lot. "There. Done." he typed.
We can't be DONE at 21 weeks! I came up with that one using the INTERNET. I still have to look at BOOKS. I have to pester family members about our ancestors in case someone's turned up a decently-named great-uncle we didn't know about when I was pregnant with Noah and found that our family trees are littered with some god-awfully bad names! I know I was all happy with our girl name but that was only because deep down I knew it was irrelevant! We can't be DONE. What the fuck am I supposed to fixate on NOW? I'm recycling the crib bedding, for christ's sake! By committing to a name this early on you're leaving me with NOTHING! Nothiiiiiiing!
I didn't say any of this to Jason, of course. I just quietly went to the secondhand bookstore and picked up a battered copy of 35,000 Baby Names for two bucks and have been frantically searching for other names that I can thoroughly cloud and muck up the issue with. So far I haven't come up with any.
I think we have his name. Oh my God. It just makes him seem so real.
(Edited: No! Not a hint! His name is not Carter! Was just intertwining the idea of baby being real and having both a name and actual boy clothing and thinking I was all poetic and shit. Ye gods, you people are too quick.)