What’s In A Name?

Picking out a child’s name can be a fun thing to do. If you’re like me, you throw out a bunch of different ideas, even if you don’t really like them. And because I joke around too much, I think of off-the-wall names that we really would have no interest in using and tell people that’s what we’re going with.

It’s been a joke since before we knew we were having a boy that if we did I’d call him Chaddeus. So we’d have Thaddeus and Chaddeus – Thad and Chad – our two little monsters, partners in crime, running around the house creating havoc.

Other names I’ve joked about just to keep people guessing might include Bob, Zaiden and Jermichael. Why? Just for fun, of course. I mean, let’s be honest. When I was in high school I wanted to name my son Neo Evan Ochsner because then his initials would be his first name. NEO! Yeah, I liked The Matrix, too. Me focusing on the initials got this response from Melissa, “You’re just lucky our last name doesn’t start with ‘S’ or I’d make our child’s initials spell ASS just because you pay too much attention to the initials!”

To get serious, Melissa and I talked about names long before Thad was born. With him, we just knew for a long time what his name was going to be. We had a boy and a girl name picked out and waiting. I know other people who are definitely the same way. They know the name right away and that’s that.

This time, we’re less settled at the moment. We think we have it figured out, but really there are four different names we’ve been throwing around lately. It’s true, we’re only 22 weeks along and should have plenty of time to pick one. Since we don’t have the name decided and etched in stone, we’ve got a couple of names penciled in the sand. I know people who were like this or even had no clue what the name was going to be until days before birth to a couple of days later. Evidently they ‘make’ you name the baby before you can leave the hospital, though. So you kind of have to pick something…

I’ve also known people who’ve had a name picked out for months and then when the baby arrives, they name it something different because it just didn’t look like the name they had picked. I’m not the best at that because there are adults that, to me, don’t look like the name they have. A child is a clean slate that can be named whatever the parents desire.

We didn’t tell anyone Thad’s name until after he was born because we didn’t want other people’s opinions to alter our thoughts of the name. We like it, it’s our child, that’s it. We also didn’t want to say it and then have someone else use the name before we got a chance – this is why we still aren’t telling our girl name. Not that we’re planning on having a girl after this child, but you never know. We’ll keep it quiet until we know we’ll never have to use it.

With this child, Melissa’s more interested in getting a few opinions and she has even suggested making a list of about 15 names, including the four names we’re thinking of, and sending it out for feedback. A test like this could open a can of worms with people hating and loving every name, and of course, could change our minds to the point of not using any of the four and starting over. At the same time, as the parent, it also seems like it could be kind of fun to get people’s opinions of names. But we’ll just keep everything quiet until that little guy arrives, just like we did with Thad. Even if it could be fun to crowdsource…just to see what the reactions would be.


About Justin Ochsner

Live Events Marketing and Public Relations. Connect on LinkedIn or Twitter @jochsner4
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