Priyanka Chaturvedi

It's all about me!!My people, my favourite things, my raving and my ranting too!

DNA Column: Deciding your child’s name can be the most difficult task

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Recently a friend asked me for suggestions on good Indian baby name sites — feel free to read that as a name site that is a treasure trove of unique, different and unheard of names. It brought back memories of my own experience of trying to find a name for my son eight years ago. Since I obviously didn’t know what gender the baby would be, I sat down and made a list of potential names.

It was like the most important project of my life — finding a name which was unique, had a personality, and one that was not heard by many. It also had to be a name when told to others would give them the impression of what a well read, intellectual types I was, to be able to come up with a name like that. Yes, I am vain that way. The first task was to decide whether I would go with names that just sounded good, or names that had a deep meaning to go with it while sounding good to the ears, of course.

The husband and I were unanimous in one thing at least, that the baby’s name would begin with an A. His/her name would have to be the first in roll call at school. I would, of course, follow celebrity baby name trends too, and I quickly figured that ‘A’ was the initial for celebrity babies too!

So the search began. What I didn’t realise when I started short listing names was that each and every name had the potential to result in a long drawn argument with the husband. This short listing wasn’t an easy affair either. I didn’t in the slightest have an idea that there could be thousands of baby boy/girl names starting with the letter A. And these were just Hindu names. We hadn’t yet attempted searching for unique names around the globe, or numerology compliant names.

On and on we went, running around in circles, at times revisiting the names we had initially rejected. Sometimes if the name selected when said out loud didn’t sound correct, we would cancel it from the list. What began as a fun task soon turned out to be one difficult task. Yes I know, many would ask ‘What’s in a name?’ But for the two of us somehow it became an important mission.

We had failed to decide on the name right up to the moment the baby arrived. Once he was born, a decision had to be taken. Finally, after a week of ‘no not this’, ‘this sounds too common’, ‘too short’, ‘too long’, we finally decided on one name! He did get a name beginning with A, not one but two As.

Yes, it was yet another quest to be unique from the rest, only to realise later that most of the parents had done the same — that is spell the name with a double A. Not just that, we were also to realise that there were seven more boys in the grade with the same name. Sigh so much for our well researched name!

Did we do the same in-depth name research when we were expecting our second baby? No. We had learnt our lesson the first time round and we had finally figured the wisdom behind Shakespeare’s words ‘What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet’.

But in spite of no research we managed to find a tongue twister of a name for her too.What are parents for after all?


Written by Priyanka Chaturvedi

March 27, 2012 at 9:11 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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