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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Minding my own business

A few weeks back, my sister Shelley, who is pregnant with her third child, called and asked what I thought of a name she and her husband are considering should the new baby be a boy. Let's say the name is "Jehosephat."

Since she asked my opinion, I gave it to her.

"I think it sounds like an Amish kid who gets his haircut with a bowl on his head."

Fast forward to last night when my sister Angie and her daughter Ava were over for dinner. I can't remember how the topic came up, but Ang and I started talking about names for our possibly new nephew. We decided that Oliver was totally cute, would fit nicely with our sister's other kids' names, and did not bring to mind barn-raising, electricity-shunning people.

So, Angie called Shelley and left a message that we thought Oliver would be a great name for our nephew. She even helpfully suggested some middle names to go with Oliver.

You know, we didn't stop to consider the fact that a pregnant woman typically has hormones surging through her body that make her let's say...sensitive. Oh, we got our reminder for sure. When I opened my e-mail late last night, here's the message Shelley had sent to both Angie and me:

Anyway...I've been thinking, about you 2 reside to the fact that this is not YOUR child and we will name OUR child whatever we want to?!?!? I get it that you don't like the name. Fine. Maybe I don't care for your kids' names! So, there!

Yikes! I immediately replied our suggestion was all in good fun. (Though we wouldn't have argued if she'd said "I love it! Thanks!") I reminded her that several family members had plenty to say when we chose the name Mary Safrona had Robbie been born with girl parts. And I added that of course we will love her baby no matter what its name is.

Apparently, I've been in this situation before. Though I don't recall it, Angie said that when she suggested Ava as a possible name for her baby-girl-to-be, I said "You can't use Ava. That was the name of Hitler's mistress." Now, I don't think that I even knew that fact, so I don't see how I could have said that. But Angie insists that I did.

And when my sister-in-law solicited opinions on the name Camryn for a girl, Angie said that I replied "It sounds like a fat girl." Which, I theoretically might have said, though I don't recall it for certain.

Now I really do have nieces named Ava and Camryn -- neither of whom is a mistress or a fat girl -- and I love both of them to pieces. So if I end up with a nephew named "Jehosephat," I will love him completely (and I won't even buy him a baby-sized black brimmed hat).

And the next time someone asks me what I think of their chosen baby name (or pet name for that matter), I'll smile sweetly and say, "If you like it, then I'm happy."


Shannon @ Gabi's World said...

Oh my goodness! She needs to not ask your opinion if she is so horrified with your previous answers to the same question anyhow (whether you really said them or not). And names will bring a certain idea in someone's head and if that is what you thought, then THAT is what you thought. I remember when I was preggo with Jeremy, I suggested the name Jeremy and his dad so "No, I'd want to stab him!" It makes you think his dad was some type of hoodlum or thug, but he is FAR from that! Apparently, he worked with a guy named Jeremy who was lazy and annoying when he worked at a sub shop in his teen years, and the guy was so lazy and annoying that all he could think of while he cut the subs was wanting to stab this guy to get him to shut up! Obviously, I agreed that "Jeremy" was out of the question when these thoughts came to his mind. After months and 1000 different name suggestion on each others parts and unable to agree on anything, he finally says to me one day, "What about naming him Jeremy?" As you can imagine with my hormone surging body, I wanted to stab HIM at this point! And obviously he was named Jeremy and to this day, he has resisted the urge to stab him!

And BTW, I hope your SIL doesn't read your blog! If so, I sense another nasty gram coming your way!

Amy said...

Oh, my sister does read the blog. She e-mailed me to say that her original e-mail was supposed to be light-hearted. We're good. That's the great thing about family. You can be mad and snap and then it's all ok.

Sharon said...

LOL! I couldn't help but think of Colleen when reading this, with the Amish reference and all. Please make sure she sees this! ;)

I love Oliver. Very cute. Pregnancy hormones suck.

Nate's Mom said...

This is too funny. I too have learned that when someone asks what you think of the name they've chosen, they don't really want to know what you think. They want you to like it. Of course it doesn't matter what our nieces/nephews are named. We still love them. I wouldn't choose the name for my child, but it's not mine to choose. I like your response of "if you like it, I'm happy." Going to memorize than one!

Sheri in CA

varangianguard said...

Your niece is in luck! Hitler's mistress (and very briefly, wife) was named Eva, not Ava.

The most famous Ava I can think of was the late actress Ava Gardner. Much, much better.