I'm a traditionalist, I can't help it. Maybe its part of being the oldest and wanting everything to be fair, everyone to have the same experiences, and to cross the same milestones. Maybe its just in my DNA.
When Daniel (also a traditionalist) and I found out we were expecting, naming felt like such an important task. Everyone has their own process and qualifications for doing this, but for us it was an opportunity to bestow a special blessing. We made lists of names with special meanings or that represented special people. We called our parents and learned of funny family names, like one of Daniel's relatives called "Allie," short for: Alabama Georgia. Bless her southern heart.
When we got news that our little bundle would be a girl, the list was cut in half and we spent weeks deliberating. For some reason, this felt like the most important thing-- our girl needed a name! Pregnancy hormones have a way of assigning urgency to pretty much all things, you know, like dusting baseboards or organizing rarely used cabinets.
We finally settled on two names. It went down something like this...
Sarah: "Ok, which of your names is the most important to you?"
Daniel: "Forced to choose: Grace, I really like Grace. Its in both of our families, my twin sister is Mary Grace, and one of your sisters is Haley Grace. Its a beautiful name. Grace was my Grandmother's name. What about you?"
Sarah: "I always wanted to name a daughter after my Great Grandmother, Margaret, but I don't really want to call her Margaret."
Daniel: "Ok, what about Margaret Grace? We can call her Grace."
Sarah: "Sounds good... Grace Margaret it is."
Daniel: "Or, Grace Margaret sounds good too."
My husband is a good sport, but if you know me at all, that goes without saying. That sweet, patient, handsome, man of mine deserves a metal...or a ring (check). :)
For a long time we kept her name a secret, whispering it to each other, and calling her by the secret name in our prayers. Finally we decided to share with our family and closest friends just weeks before her arrival. One night about a week before she was born, it dawned on me that her name was perfect, because she is Grace to us. For more reasons than I am willing to share, everything about this miracle of pregnancy felt like Grace. Literally.
On the day of her birth we named her "Grace Margaret" in memory and honor of people whom we cherish, and as a blessing for the future that she might receive portions of their spirit as they trickle down our family tree.
She remains Grace in our lives. Such a blessing.