Blonde moment

And the silver spoon.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

So, why did your parents give you your name?

When I got married, I realized that parents have different naming philosophies. It’s interesting to see how your friends’ names fit in with the rest of their families names. Josh’s side has a couple of sets of kids where the first letters are all the same. My side there’s the “Biblical named” philosophy, the “I don’t want my kids to have weird nick names” philosophy, the “name after someone” philosophy, and the “random” name philosophy. My dad’s mom is the only one close enough to the “old country” to be considered “ethnic,” and she doesn’t even have a Swedish name, though she is the child of Swedish immigrants.

For those of interest, Josh was named after the book of the Bible where his parents’ favorite verse was in. I, on the other hand, was named after my grandmothers. My parents actually had more of a random philosophy. All of the first names they picked out were names they liked, and middle names were picked after someone they liked. My dad really wanted to name me “Beth,” because he liked Little Women, but my mom put her foot down. No child of hers would have the initials “B.S.” (My mom has first hand experience growing up with such initials.) And so, I was named after both my grandmothers, for one of them was named Elizabeth.

I think parents who name children after people, either for religious reasons or for family reasons, do so in hopes that their children will emulate certain qualities in the person the child is named for. As a child, I loved my grandparents because they loved me and were neat people to be around. As a young adult, I have been fortunate to know both the good and the bad points of my grandparents, and have loved them as whole people. I have been fortunate to have memories of all of my grandparents, and I realize how fortunate I really am. And I am fortunate to have been touched by their lives.

In particular today, my thoughts and prayers are with my Grandma Betty as she is having major surgery on her stomach to remove an infectious polyp. She’s truly a remarkable woman. She nursed my grandfather for the last five years of his life, and has, in turn, nursed those of her adult children who have been sick. She is a prayer. All Christians are supposed to pray, but she didn’t just do it, she knew how to pray well. Furthermore, she has donated a good portion of her widowhood to leading and participating in Bible studies. And she always has to be active and doing something. She makes quilts, afghans, some of her own cloths, and she is always cooking for someone. She is not an idle person.

It is my hope that I may not be an idle person; that I may learn to pray as often as she does; and that I may learn to be such a student of the Bible. And in the mean time, when my thoughts get anxious about her, I say a little prayer for her. And I pet Aria, my comforting kitty. Yes, I brought a kitty to work with me today.


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