Friday, 21 February 2014

Big Decisions: Naming A Baby!

Naming Henry was possibly one of the hardest decisions. I'm one of those people that couldn't choose their baby's name until after they arrived, I just needed to know whether he "looked" like a certain name! For the duration of my pregnancy he was known as Spud, and for quite a few hours of his life he was still Spud or officially "Baby Best" as per his little ankle tags.

When we found out he was infact a he, I can't say I was surprised! Almost everyone thought he was going to be a boy, as did I! If he had turned out to be a girl I would have been really shocked! Although I had a list of girls names in my head I hadn't really thought much about them, all the emphasis had been on finding a boy's name. When it came down to it though, we were at war. There were so many names I liked that Loz didn't and vice versa. In August the list of baby names from the National Office of Statistics was published and we went through the whole list of some 6,000 boys names and marked 'Xs' in columns on the excel spreadsheet. We came up with 5 that we both liked. Just 5! Out of 6,000! 

Even though we had 5 that we both liked, we had none that we really loved. I liked Isaac from the outset and Loz was gunning for Thomas or Oliver, but they just didn't fit right to me. As much as I liked Thomas, I didn't like Tom and as Loz's last name begins with J, I didn't want a TJ. Oliver was too popular, Harry too. I quite liked Felix but Loz could only associate it with the cat food much to my annoyance. Toby, Dylan, Alfie, and Isaac were my top choices, but quickly dismissed, although I wanted Isaac desperately and spent hours trying to convince him.

Weeks went by and sometimes we wouldn't discuss it at all as it just ended up in a heated debate and neither of us budging. Over Christmas it was all but forgotten with us enjoying our first and last Christmas alone together and I was starting to get a bit worried that we hadn't chosen a name yet. Arthur came into the mix and I felt a little better for at least having a few we kind of agreed on. 

I ended up going into labour 8 days early and had him within 5 hours of my waters going (first sign of labour) and my contractions staring 40 minutes later. During that time the midwife asked whether we had a name and we still didn't. Even in the small hours of the morning when I lay in my hospital bed staring at his little face, eyes crinkling and blinking widely at the world the issue of his name was far from the front of my mind. I just couldn't believe he was here and I'd had actually had him. When Loz returned in the morning we didn't really even discuss it, too immersed in our little bundle of joy... the midwives popped in every now and then asking whether we had decided and I was getting nudged in text messages for a name from my family so the name discussion happened quite matter-of-factly. "We need to give him a name!"

So our names were Henry, Isaac, Thomas, Arthur, Harry and Oliver. I looked at Spud properly and decided that he definitely didn't look like a Thomas, or a Harry or an Oliver. Thankfully Loz agreed, which left Arthur, Isaac and Henry... he didn't look like an Arthur either. Loz then told me that it was totally my choice after what he had witnessed me going through to give birth to our son. I had been hoping he'd say that--it was finally my chance to call him the name I wanted to call him all along! But as I looked at him I started crying because he was a Henry and not an Isaac and I knew it right deep down. It wasn't even a name we'd particularly considered, not like the others. I liked that we could say "hey, hey, hey, Henry" to calm him down when he cried. I think in my very tired, post baby birthing mind that was very important. Loz asked me whether I was sure and I said yes and sobbed into his little baldy head. Next time the midwives asked I beamed and said very proudly, "We've decided to call him Henry". At last! 

Sometimes I wonder whether I chose the right one, but I think it takes time for them to grow into their name. As a newborn, they don't really have much character-they cry, eat sleep and poop a lot but personalities take a little while to come through. I still referred to him as Spud or "the baby" for quite a few months but now he's definitely grown into it. Cheeky little Henry. 

His second name is Gordon, after both of my Grandads who sadly aren't with us anymore. I think they would have loved Henry and it's our little tribute to them and the male line in my family who all share the same middle name of Gordon, including my Dad and little brother. We debated about having Hunter as a middle name alongside Gordon but it was just too much of a mouthful. I have it saved for the next one (who if another little boy will almost certainly be an Arthur/Isaac Hunter if he suits them!).

How did you decide on your baby's name?

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