What's In A Name?

Do you have a namesake or are you named after someone or a place?

     My niece turned 13 yesterday.  I am fighting every urge to post her picture because she is beautiful and I am so proud of her, but I have to be aware of the internet and out of respect for her and her parents, I will resist.

     Between me, my sister, and my brother we have 11 kids.  All 11 are named after family members. We have a "Jr." and a III.  My daughter is named after my sister and my niece, with the birthday, is named after me. Both of my boys are named after my grandfather (the older with his first name, the younger with the last name) and my nieces who were born two weeks apart are both named after their maternal grandmothers.

     I love it. A name says so much and whether we have used maiden names, or first names as middle names it is special every way you look at it.  It's something they all share and have in common.

     It's funny the bonds you have with nieces and nephews. I have the oldest three and my brother and sister have their kids closer in age to each other.  I seriously could not love my nieces and nephews any more if they were mine.  We live very close to each other, until recently, we all lived on the same street for 10 years. We are trying to move out a little more from where we are so we have had to go individually. These kids have grown up more like siblings than cousins.

     I made a sign for my mom a few years ago that said,"Grandmother and Pop's House Where cousins go to become best friends." It is true.  Some of them just get each other, some fight more like brothers and sisters, but they all just love each other and it is the sweetest thing seeing them all together.

     My sister's oldest was born a day after his due date.  When she was pregnant with my niece, we all started guessing when we thought she would be born.  Her due date was the second week in August. We were all on vacation early June and everyone was throwing out a date. It just came in my head and I said July 25th. Everyone thought I was crazy because it was 3 weeks early and my sister had easy, low risk pregnancies.

     As we got to the beginning of July, everyone asked if I wanted another date, but nope, I stuck with it.  The morning of the 25th I was getting ready for church to teach my Sunday School class and my mom called and said, "Well, you aren't going to believe this, but Amanda's water broke and she is on the way to the hospital." I said, "of course I believe it" and I called to let them know I wouldn't be able to teach and went to the hospital.

     I had big babies. I am 5'3 and used to only weigh a little over 100 lbs. My babies were really big and after 2 days of labor with my first ending in a C-section, we scheduled my boys to be born that way 1 week early.  They were still big, but man that was easy going in and having it done. I always say I had enough labor for all three with the first!  Not having the experience of a "regular" birth, I was blown away watching my sister have her kids.

     I was there for all five of them being born. I was going through my divorce for the last two and my kids had after school things and I thought I was going to miss 4 and 5, but I managed to get there in time.  I joke that the 5th waited on me because we got there and about 15 minutes later she was ready to push.  I think of that labor like waiting on a page to load on the computer.  It was taking a while and then went fast at the end.  It was like that, he waited on us to get there then he was ready.  It being her 5th she literally only pushed once and he came out like a little fish almost saying, "It's ok, mom, I've got this one!"

     I saw all five and each time was just remarkable.  I am godmother to my sister's kids and it is such a wonderful thing to say to them I saw them come into the world. I don't know how anyone can watch that and not believe in God.  It is truly the most miraculous and wonderful thing to ever witness.

     And, after my niece, 3, 4, and 5 were all three weeks early.

Are you named after someone or a place or have a significant meaning to your name? It really is a hard thing naming your kids.


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