Naming Our First Born

I can't remember the exact moment me and my husband Jason decided we wanted the sex of our first child to be a surprise. With friends and family heavily weighing in about our decision, I do remember feeling great relief though that we both felt so strongly about it.

To my friends' and family's credit they were simply surprised that I wanted to be surprised. After all, I still shake the presents under the Christmas tree with my name on them!

While I was pregnant I got used to the same four questions: "How are you feeling? Do you know what you're having? Have you picked out names? Are you sharing the names?"

I generally felt wonderful throughout my pregnancy and we were firm in that we didn't want to know what we were having. But the name questions, they felt invasive to me.

For starters we hadn't yet agreed on names, especially for a boy. We also didn't want to hear people's opinions on the names we had chosen. Say we were considering the name Lonnie, someone might have said "Ugh, I had an Uncle Lonnie who had an LSD habit." Right. That would really make me want to name my kid Lonnie then.

I did exactly that to a friend of mine who was due a few months before me. She and her husband also wanted to be surprised but shared the names they had picked. Matthew and Reese. I made a comment then how Matthew seemed like an odd choice since the couple had a close friend named Matt. She fell silent after I said that, and well, could I really blame her? I had just done to her what I was trying to avoid having done to me!

But the plain truth was that we believed that our child would bring it's own name into the world. Or we at least wanted to meet this little person inside of me before saying 'yes, he is a Harry,' or 'yes, she is a Sally.' That's not to say though that we didn't have some front runners, we did.

In talking about names we knew we didn't want our baby's name to be as common as my husband's name, Jason or as different as my name, Reedu, but some place in between.

My brother-in-law was in favor of the name 'Pomegranate.'I was more than half way through my pregnancy when we were thousands of feet in the air on a Virgin America flight out to San Fransisco to see my brother get married. I was listening to NPR and the reporter's name was Milo Miles. I leaned across the isle to where Jason was sitting (a great compromise by the way for two people who hate the middle seat), and said, "What do you think of the name Milo?" He flashed a big grin at me and his blue eyes beamed the answer back. It was the first male name we had agreed on.

I went into labor on a Sunday and gave birth on Monday. The Friday before Jason had presented me with another name that I liked a lot. We went into the delivery room with two strong contenders.

In the moments after our son was born there was a ton of commotion and excitement in the room. My mom was bouncing around like a kid in a candy shop, my husband was holding on to the wall, crying with joy.

What seemed like a half hour passed before my midwife quipped, "So what's this kid's name?!"

Jason looked at me then, quite like the way he looked at me on the Virgin America flight out to California, and we agreed it would be Milo. Accept we would spell it M-y-l-o in honor of our moniker for one another, "my love."


How did you arrive at the name(s) of your baby? Did you share it with friends and family, why or why not? Please share with me, I'd love to hear!

~Reedu blogs at ReeWrite and The Huffington Post. You can follow her on Twitter at @Reedu.

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