There is much debate amongst parents-to-be about whether or not to share their baby’s name before said child’s actual arrival into this world. For the most part, I think parents tend to fall into two camps.
The first camp of baby naming parents are the ones who think their child’s name must be kept under wraps like some type of government secret. I’ve had friends like this. They won’t even breathe so much as a hint about what their baby’s name might be until the moment it pops out covered in afterbirth, and they’ll get real intense and shifty-eyed if you even so much as think to ask before then. I’m pretty sure not even Chinese water torture could persuade these type of parents.
The second camp of baby naming parents are the “no big deal” parents. They’ve chosen a name and they’re fine sharing it with the world. They’d like to try that baby name on for size and give everyone a chance to get used to it first… even if they don’t actually care about anyone else’s opinions.
I’m in the second camp. I’ve thought about baby names since I was a kid and have kept a running list of favorites since my college days (no, I am not even kidding about this). The moment I get pregnant, I start mulling over baby name possibilities. I’m a “namer.” What can I say? My husband is a little more cautious than I am about name sharing. He’s not in the government type secret baby name camp, but he’s also a little wary about just sharing it with the world because, “What if we change our minds?!”
I pretty much had to twist his arm and bug him about it 8,000 times to get him to let me finally share our little boy’s name, but he finally agreed… with the understanding that I promise not to be afraid to change his name if for some reason we don’t like it as his arrival gets closer (or even after he’s here). Baby names are a big decision, so of course I agreed. I would never feel obligated to stick with a name just because I’d already announced it. I mean, what if he shows up and looks like a “Frank” or a “John”? That said, I love the name we’ve settled on for Baby Brother and I’m pretty certain I won’t be changing my mind. So… without further ado… the baby’s name is…
My husband suggested it months ago, before I was even pregnant, while reading “Mere Christianity” by C.S. Lewis. C.S. Lewis’ name was Clive and he liked it. I did too. I also liked that it was a name he had actually suggested. It is the first and only time he has ever suggested a baby name as the last time around he only vetoed and never actually came up with any names.
Once we found out we were having a boy for sure it was definitely in our list of top contenders. Then one day my husband sent me a text with the meaning of the name Clive: “It is of Old English origin, and the meaning of Clive is ‘cliff slope.’ Someone who lives near a cliff.” The meaning might not seem very special, but my husband’s name is Craig and the meaning of it is: “Rock or rocky. Someone who lives near a crag (a steep or rugged cliff or rock face).” The names were so similar in meaning that I couldn’t help but feel like it was serendipitous.
I realize that it might not be a name for everyone, but I really love it! And yes… I’m totally that mom who had custom shirts made for her children. I couldn’t resist! They’re from My Everyday Design on Etsy and the little tiny one for Clive is the cutest! I’m actually having a little giveaway for some of the custom shirts from My Everyday Design over on my Instagram if you want to check it out (@thelittlethingswedo)!
What do you think: would you/did you share your baby’s name before their arrival?
Lauren Hartmann is the founder of The Little Things We Do, a blog about life and adventures in Portland, Oregon. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram or catch up on all of her posts here on Babble.
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