Thursday, 1 October 2009

What's In A Name?

I remember with each of my pregnancies thinking long and hard about the names I wanted to give my children. Andy and I had our reasons for certain names and reasons against them. Some names would lend themselves to be shortened to something that didn't flow right with the surname, or perhaps the initials turned out to be a rather unsuitable acronym.

Andy's one insistence was that the children did not share their initials as this would make the issue of post later in life very confusing. If letters were address to people with the same initials, who opened it first?

My insistence was that my children did not have names that reminded me negatively of people. So when choosing names I instantly dismissed some suggestions as the name would be associated with somebody I perhaps went to school with who was unpleasant, or was the name of a particularly difficult person I'd worked with in the past. I couldn't name my child the same as somebody that irked me. Family names were also ruled out as I'm not a fan of naming children after aunts or uncles or the like.

We also wanted names that could be shortened without sounding ridiculous and also names that were classic and ageless. No Britney's or Brad's for us.

So, I was rather astonished this morning when I mentioned to Sam that we were spending part of our day off tomorrow meeting an ex-work colleague for coffee. He asked me what her name as and when informed her name was Sue, he said, 'I like Sue, she's nice'. Sam's met Sue a couple of times in the office, but I know for sure he has no recollection of her, so I asked him what it was he liked about Sue. Instantly, without even thinking about it, he replied, 'When I go for coffee and a biscuit with Granddad, there is a Sue in the coffee shop and she's really nice. So, all Sues in coffee shops are nice. That's how I know'.

Already, at the age of four, he is associating names with his own memories and formed opinions of people. It's amazing to see the little idiosyncracies he is already displaying at such a young age and to see him using them to determine whether or not he is happy with a situation that is about to arise, or whether he is comfortable about meeting somebody.

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