Think About It: The Name Game - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News, Weather and Sports

May 24, 2012

Think About It: The Name Game

Naming one's children is a very personal thing, yet, at the same time, an extremely public event, since that name will be known by everyone your child comes in contact with for the next 80+ years. While my wife and I had not absolutely finalized the name of our second child, upon giving birth, my beloved looked up at me five-minutes after the surreal event and said my daughter's name, just to make sure I knew who was in charge, which was never in doubt, of course. And she was right- the name fit perfectly.

Hawaii is big on girls' names ending in "a" right now, as the list for top names in 2011 for newborn girls includes Sophia, Olivia, Emma, Isabella, Ava, Mia, Maya, and Malia. Biblical names were hot in 2011 on the boys' side in Hawaii, as Noah ranked #1, with Elijah and Jacob among the top six names. There are lots of different reasons why parents choose a name, and while some people say a name is just a name, the person who gets it asserts ownership over the years and is identified as fitting the name, and vice versa. Some people prefer nicknames over time, some love their names, while some people are gifted with interesting spellings for which they must constantly correct people.

Names are often based on popular cultural icons, family history, ethnicity, religion, or aspirations prescribed by the parents. Then, it's up to each of us to do our own thing with this given name. I don't think I would have done things differently if my name was different, as long as it wasn't something like Moon Unit, or Zeppo. Interesting though how such a personal choice, which lasts forever, becomes such a public fixture as we go about our time here. Thin about it…

 

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